PLEASANTON -- After a judge ruled that Castlewood Country Club workers were illegally locked out for more than two years, the employees will be allowed to return Oct. 16.
On Aug. 17, an administrative law judge with the National Labor Relations Board found that Castlewood had maintained an unlawful lockout of the 61 workers. The judge recommended the club re-instate all displaced employees as soon as possible as well as pay them all back wages and benefits.
"We felt it was probably best for employees to bring them back," said Jerry Olson, Castlewood's general manager. "We are looking forward to (having them back). Quite a few have a long history with us."
Workers will have an orientation and a training session on Oct. 9, Olson added, because, some systems and menus have been updated or changed since the lockout.
Although the union, Local 2850, and Castlewood management have not yet reached an agreement on a new contract or how back wages will be paid out, the ability for union members to return to their jobs at the hillside country club in Pleasanton is a start, said union spokesperson Sarah Norr.
Workers will go back under the terms of their old contract for now, which provides strong seniority protections as well as a lower-cost family health care.
Since the judge announced his recommendation in August, there have been four meetings between Castlewood management and union leaders to try and iron out the payment of the
However, Castlewood rejected an offer the union presented, and the next meeting to try and hash things out is scheduled for Oct. 24.
"We are still hopeful to reach a settlement but we were a little confused by (Castlewood's) decision to reject our proposal and only allow the workers to go back," she said. "It was a really good deal for them. Still, this is a major victory for us in getting folks back to work. But, it's not really over until there is a new contract and wages are paid back."
Overall, the union estimates Castlewood owes about $1.8 million in back wages and health care payments to workers.
Norr believes most of the displaced workers will return to the job.
"We don't want to count our chickens before they hatch," she said. "But most have wanted to come back and most have told me they will."
Contact Katie Nelson at 925-847-2164 or follow her at Twitter.com/katienelson210.