Union members, who said they are among those who were locked out of their jobs two years ago in a wage and benefit dispute at Castlewood Country Club, asked the Pleasanton City Council Tuesday night to support their efforts to get their jobs back.
The group's plea came only days after Administrative Law Judge Clifford Anderson of the National Labor Relations Board found that Castlewood's lockout, which started Aug. 10, 2010, was illegal.
In a written opinion, Anderson recommended that the NLRB order Castlewood to reinstate the locked-out workers and pay them two years of back wages and benefits. That could cost the private country club more than $3 million in wages and benefits.
Judge Anderson gave Castlewood 28 days from the time of his finding on Aug. 17 to either accept the terms and pay the workers, or move forward with an appeal.
"I want to congratulate you and commend you for your courage in standing up to this issue for so long," Councilman Matt Sullivan told the workers.
Locked-out Castlewood cook Carlos Mejia said, "We've been saying for two years that Castlewood wasn't giving us a fair chance to get our jobs back. Now Judge Anderson is saying the same thing."
"I hope this will be a wake-up call to the golfers that they need to stop stalling and put us back to work," he added.
Anderson's opinion states: "I find that that the (Castlewood Country) Club had abandoned its earlier good faith bargaining for a new contract and, as of August 10, 2010, the respondent was no longer bargaining in good faith with an intent to reach an agreement. Rather, it was unlawfully endeavoring to frustrate the bargaining process and reduce the possibility of the parties arriving at any agreement."
"I further find that the Respondent's conduct on that date and the positions taken in bargaining on that day were undertaken because of its animus toward the union and animus to the locked out employees who supported the union in bargaining."
Added Castlewood janitor Francisca Carranza: "We're thrilled about the decision, but we know we could still have a long fight in front of us. We'll be here for as long as it takes to get our jobs back and win a fair contract with health care for our kids. We know people in the community will stand behind us, just like they always have over the past two years."