United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
NEW ORLEANS COLD STORAGE AND WAREHOUSE COMPANY LTD.
TEAMSTERS LOCAL 270, ET AL.
ORDER AND REASONS
the Court are cross-motions for summary judgment filed by
Plaintiff New Orleans Cold Storage and Warehouse Company,
Ltd. and Defendants Teamsters Local 270 and Esau Taylor. Rec.
Docs. 16-17. The parties timely filed opposition memoranda.
Rec. Docs. 19-20. For the reasons discussed below, IT
IS ORDERED that Plaintiff's motion (Rec. Doc.
17) is DENIED.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that Defendants' motion (Rec.
Doc. 16) is GRANTED.
FACTUAL BACKGROUND AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
case arises out of the October 13, 2015 termination of
Defendant Esau Taylor (“Taylor”) by his former
employer, Plaintiff New Orleans Cold Storage and Warehouse
Company, Ltd. (“NOCS”). Rec. Doc. 1-1 at ¶
5. Taylor was employed under a Collective Bargaining
Agreement (“CBA”) between NOCS and Defendant
Teamsters Local 270 (“the Union”). Id.
at ¶ 4; see also Rec. Doc. 16-4.
VII of the CBA, titled “DISCHARGE, ” provided
that “[t]he Employer shall at all times possess and
retain the right to hire and discharge, provided the
discharge shall be for just cause.” Rec. Doc. 16-4 at 3
Taylor's termination, the Union requested arbitration
under the CBA. Rec. Doc. 1-1 at ¶ 6. Article X of the
CBA, titled “GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE, ” provides:
jurisdiction of the arbitrator is limited to:
(a) Interpretation, application of the specific terms of this
Agreement, and adjudication of issues arising out of the
application of those specific terms, and
(b) A decision or award which is not contrary to, and in no
way adds to, subtracts from or alters, the plain words of
this Agreement as used in their most commonly understood
(c) Reversing the decision of the Company in matters
involving the fairness of discipline, discharge or change of
status of an employee, only if it is found that the Company
has acted arbitrarily and in violation of this Agreement.
Rec. Doc. 16-4 at 4 (emphasis added).
issue presented to the arbitrator, John Barnard, was stated
as follows: “Was the termination of grievant Esau
Taylor for just cause? If not, what is the proper
remedy?” Rec. Doc. 16-5 at 2. After reviewing Article
VII, the positions of both NOCS and the Union, and various
documents (including the notice of termination, an email, and
an unsigned handwritten note), the arbitrator determined that
Taylor was allegedly terminated for insubordination.
Id. at 7. He defined insubordination as an
employee's failure to follow a reasonable order after
being warned that failure to obey the order could subject the
employee to discipline. Id. at 7-8. The arbitrator
found that Taylor was never given a direct order.
Id. at 8. He then noted that
The primary reason arbitrators have included certain basic
due process rights within the concept of just cause is to
help the parties prevent the imposition of discipline where
there is a little or no evidence on which to base a just
cause discharge. Thus, consideration of industrial due
process as a component of ...