L.A. employee unions sue over 2010 furloughs

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in Employment Law

The International Union of Operating Engineers and Local 721 of the Serv­ice Employees International Union (SEIU) are suing the city of Los Angeles in the wake of last summer’s mandatory furlough of thousands of municipal employees.

The unions filed a lawsuit after Los Angeles refused to arbitrate grievances that it violated collective bargaining agreements by imposing the furloughs. The suit claims that Los Angeles’ decision to force workers to take up to 26 days off without pay violated a 2009 deal between the unions and the city.

It called for the city to save $77.8 million through deferred wage and cost-of-living increases, reduced hours and other measures. In return, the unions say, Los Angeles agreed not to lay off or furlough union members—unless it restored the deferred pay raises.

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