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A review of the events that triggered (1) the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Emergency Order 26 (E.O. 26) and (2) regulatory regimes and policies promulgated by other government agencies and carriers that restrict employees’ use of cell phones and other personal electronic devices on railroads and mass transit

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Arbitrator Vaughn describes the impediments to the implementation of high speed rail in the United States, the changes in operational processes – and, possibly, ownership – that may attend the transition, and the factors that will likely control the evolution of collective bargaining and laborrelations as high speed rail is introduced

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The authors posit that there has been a shift, from (a) Arbitrators’ deference to an employer’s imposition of discharge absent arbitrariness or abuse of discretion to (b) the de novo review of whether the penalty was unfair, arbitrary or capricious (i.e., unreasonable) from the arbitrator’s perspective.

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Current Issues in attendance

An examination of fault and no-fault attendance policies; “excessive” absenteeism; the use of progressive discipline for absenteeism; disparate treatment; and factors in determining just cause.

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Violence in the workplace: Prevention strategies

A three-part approach is recommended as the best strategy to prevent violence: 1) pre-incident training, 2) stress-management interventions, and 3) employee victim debriefing. Warning signs of potential violent behavior, and calming methodologies are described. Comment is offered regarding the implications for the arbitrator of measures taken by management to avoid workplace violence, and how to …

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