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Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Association v. Trans World Airlines Inc.

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS, SECOND CIRCUIT.


December 15, 1959

AIR LINE STEWARDS AND STEWARDESSES ASSOCIATION, INTERNATIONAL, AN UNINCORPORATED LABOR ORGANIZATION, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
TRANS WORLD AIRLINES, INC., A CORPORATION, DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.

Before CLARK, WATERMAN and MOORE, Circuit Judges.

Per Curiam: Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Association International is the certified bargaining representative for the purposes of the Railway Labor Act, as amended,*fn1 of the flight stewards and hostesses employed by Trans World Airlines, Inc. (TWA). It brought action seeking an injunction against TWA to require it to bargain with the plaintiff with respect to some fifty flight hostesses and stewards, not nationals of the United States or resident here, and who, based abroad, were employed by TWA solely in connection with TWA flights outside the continental United States and its possessions.

TWA admitted all the plaintiff's allegations. The plaintiff moved for judgment on the pleadings. The defendant filed a cross-motion for summary judgment. The district court granted defendant's cross-motion, dismissed the complaint and filed a learned opinion, reported at 173 F. Supp. 369.

As the district court pointed out in the opinion below, it is an accepted canon of construction that the coverage of a federal statute will not extend beyond our national boundaries unless such a legislative intent clearly appears. Foley Bros. Inc. v. Filardo, 336 U.S. 281. The statute here involved demonstratesno such intent. Indeed, it discloses a contrary one.The Interstate Commerce Act (49 U.S.C. Chapter 1) is limited in its application to common carriers engaged in interstate and foreign transportation "but only in so far as such transportation * * * takes place within the United States" (49 U.S.C. ยงยง 1(1)(c), 1(2)). The coverage of the Railway Labor Act as amended (see fn. 1), being dependent upon the coverage of the Interstate Commerce Act was therefore held by the National Mediation Board not to extend beyond the United States. This determination was upheld by the Court of Appeals of the District of Columbia. Air Line Dispatchers Association v. National Mediation Board, 189 F.2d 685(1951), cert. denied, 342 U.S. 849(1951). Plaintiff, being certified for the purposes of the Railway Labor Act, may not represent foreign nationals, foreign-based, exclusively employed in foreign areas. The Eighth Circuit is in agreement. Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Ass'n International v. Northwest Airlines, 267 F.2d 170 (8 Cir. 1959), cert. denied, 28 U.S. Law Week 3165(1959).

Affirmed.


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