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Crawford Secures Democratic Process Rights for Union Members

Attorney Susan Crawford represented Joe Conway, President of Fire Fighters Local 311 in Madison, WI, in a successful challenge to the 2012 election for the District 5 Vice President of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), an international union headquartered in Washington, D.C. Conway challenged the election contending that numerous delegates and proxies were improperly seated and therefore ineligible to vote, and that such improprieties affected the outcome of the election. The United States Department of Labor's Office of Labor-Management Standards, in investigating the complaint, identified numerous violations in the election procedures.

Under a settlement agreement, the IAFF will hold a new election for District 5 vice president by August 15, 2013, under the supervision of and in accordance with rules issued by the DOL's Office of Labor-Management Standards. In the new election, Conway will face off against Tom Thornberg, who was installed after the contested election.

The successful challenge upholds the rights of union members, under federal law, to participate in fair and democratic elections for local and national officers of their unions.

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