The author is an attorney in the law firm of Youngdahl, Larrison & Agee in Little Rock, Arkansas. This paper is based on a talk given June 8, 1976, at the First National Conference on Equal Employment and Collective Bargaining in the Private and Public Sectors, Washington, D.C., sponsored by the Equal Employment and Collective Bargaining Committee of the Federal Bar Association.
Sixteen years ago the United States Supreme Court told those concerned with employer-employee relationships that the judgment of private contract arbitrators is superior to that of courts in determining disputes arising out of collective bargaining contracts.
Two years ago the Court added a critical exception: the judgment of courts is superior to that of private contract arbitrators when the dispute also involves a claim of discrimination within the meaning of equal employment opportunity law.
But the exception has a "loophole": an "arbitral decision may be admitted as evidence and accorded such weight as the court deems appropriate." There follows the now-familiar footnote 21: