PERC Examiner Holds No Discrimination or Interference When Outspoken Union Member’s Disability Leave Cancelled

By: Chris Casillas and Sarah E. Derry

In State-Washington State Patrol, PERC Examiner Slone-Gomez dismissed the Washington State Patrol Troopers Association’s complaint, holding that the State did not cancel a union board member’s temporary disability leave in reprisal for his union activities.

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Washington Court of Appeals Finds Police Officer Cannot Demonstrate He Involuntarily Resigned After Loudermill Hearing

By:  Erica Shelley Nelson and Sarah Burke

oktoberfest-beer-clipart-1In Celis v. City of Lakewood, a Hispanic officer alleged that he was constructively discharged after he resigned pending a disciplinary determination after his Loudermill hearing. The Court found that the officer’s fear of potential termination and decommission was not enough to amount to constructive discharge and granted the City’s motion for summary judgment.

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Washington Court of Appeals Decides that Doctor Can Sue Hospital for Racial Discrimination After Revoking Hospital Privileges

By Erica Shelley Nelson and Brennen Johnson

head in sandIn Sambasivan v. Kadlec Medical Center, Division III of the Washington State Court of Appeals, overturned the dismissal of a doctor’s racial discrimination and retaliation claims. The Indian doctor sued the Hospital after it implemented a proficiency standard that prevented him from practicing his specialty. The trial court dismissed his claims, finding that the doctor lacked the necessary relationships with the Hospital to allow his lawsuit. However, the Court of Appeals reversed that decision, holding that such claims could be brought when the Hospital interfered with the doctor’s right to make additional contracts with the Hospital and obtain new patients when the doctor was acting as an independent contractor for the Hospital in certain functions.

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Washington State Supreme Court Decides That Damages For Wrongful Denial Of Health Benefits Can Include Deferred Costs And Lost Health And Longevity Of Employees

By Erica Shelley Nelson and Brennen Johnson

bad money 2In Becker v. Community Health Systems, Inc., Division III of the Washington State Court of Appeals determined that a Chief Financial Officer could sue his former employer for firing him when he refused to submit a false or misleading financial report. Although the Company sought to dismiss the CFO’s lawsuit, the Court decided that the former CFO could pursue a state common law claim for “wrongful discharge in violation of public policy.”

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PERC Holds that Pierce County Did Not Discriminate Against a Sergeant for his Union Activity and Dismissed an Interference Claim for Being Untimely Filed

By Chris Casillas and Jordan L. Jones

wolf_in_sheeps_clothing_drawingIn Pierce County, PERC Examiner Lisa A. Hartrich held that the Employer did not commit an unfair labor practice (ULP). Examiner Hartrich stated that the Union did not make a prima facie case for their discrimination claim and that the interference allegations were untimely filed.

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PERC Holds that Spokane County Did Not Interfere With Employee Rights Nor Dominate or Assist the Union in Violation of RCW 41.56.140(1) and (2)

By Chris Casillas and Jordan L. Jones

threatIn Spokane County, PERC Examiner Dianne Ramerman held that Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich did not interfere nor dominate or assist the Spokane County Deputy Sheriff’s Association when he sent an e-mail to the Union.

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PERC Holds that the Port of Anacortes Did Not Unilaterally Change a Past Practice Nor Discriminate Against an Employee When It Discontinued His Light Duty Assignment

By Chris Casillas and Jordan L. Jones

gg58789833In Port of Anacortes, PERC Examiner Jamie L. Siegel held that the Port did not unilaterally change a past practice when it ended maintenance mechanic David Bost’s light duty assignment. Examiner Siegel also found that the Port did not discriminate against Mr. Bost for union activity when it ended his light duty assignment.

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Appeals Court Upholds Ruling That A Trucking Company Was Liable For The Retaliatory Discharge Of An Independent Contractor Under The WLAD

By Jordan L. Jones

DiscriminationIn Currier v. Northland Servs., Inc., the Court of Appeals of Washington, Division One (court) upheld a trial court decision that Northland Services Inc. (NSI) was liable for the retaliatory discharge of an independent contractor under the Washington Law Against Discrimination (WLAD). The court found that “[b]ecuase the WLAD applies to this case and substantial evidence supports the trial court’s findings and conclusions that retaliation was a substantial factor in NSI’s termination of . . . [the contractor,] we affirm the trial court’s judgment.”

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PERC Examiner Finds No Discrimination in Temporary Demotion Caused by Unrelated Funding and Workload Issues

By Therese Norton

DemotionIn Seattle School District, PERC Examiner Emily Whitney dismissed a discrimination complaint brought by the Seattle/King County Building and Construction Trades Council against the Seattle School District. The Trades Council had alleged that the School District discriminated against a foreperson in the sheet metal shop when it demoted him after laying off two other staff members.

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PERC Affirmed Ruling of No Discrimination and No Interference by Port of Seattle Against Shop Steward

By Therese Norton

Arb DecisionsIn Port of Seattle, the Public Employee Relations Commission affirmed Examiner Martin’s ruling that the Port of Seattle did not discriminate against a shop steward when a supervisor “coached” him in his duties.  Decision 11848-A (PECB, 2014). The Commission also affirmed Examiner Martin’s ruling that the Port of Seattle did not interfere with the shop steward’s collective bargaining rights through statements made by his supervisor.

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