Claiming that a strike would be illegal under the Railway Labor Act (RLA), ASIG sought a temporary restraining order to head off the employees' plans. U.S. District Judge James Robart in turn issued a preliminary strike injunction to "maintain the status quo pending the outcome of a hearing to determine whether a preliminary injunction should issue."
Workers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport were properly stopped from striking over the suspension of a safety advocate, the 9th Circuit ruled Friday.
Air Craft Service International Group (ASIG), which provides aircraft refueling and other services at Sea-Tac, suspended Alex Popescu in September 2012 for allegedly "screaming obscenities at his supervisor."
Noting that the suspension came just two days after the workplace safety advocate's appearance before the Seattle Port Commission, however, Popescu and other ASIG employees called the discipline retaliatory.
Absent Popescu's reinstatement, various ASIG employees worked with labor organizer Jonathan Rosenblum and the group Working Washington to plan a strike. After Rosenblum told the press in October 2012 that a strike was imminent, ASIG sued him, along with Popescu, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters' local chapter and Working Washington.