Union Pacific Railroad Co. v. International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, and Transportation Workers, No. 19-3746 (8th Cir. 2021)Annotate this Case
After the railroad fired a train engineer for defecating on a train-car connector, an arbitration board reinstated him. The railroad sought to vacate the arbitration award in federal court, but the district court upheld the engineer's reinstatement by enforcing the award.
The Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court's judgment, concluding that the Board applied the governing collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and acted within the scope of its authority. The court rejected the railroad's contention that the remedy creates new prerequisites to the CBA's discipline requirements. The court shared the district court's bewilderment at the Board's conclusion that a company cannot fire someone for purposefully defecating on company property. Even so, the court cannot review the merits.