On January 23, 1967, authorities on collective bargaining procedures in public employment gathered at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, under the joint sponsorship of the Labor Management Institute of the American Arbitration Association and the Massachusetts League for Cities and Towns to offer guidance on implementing the recently enacted law governing bargaining rights of State employees. Many of the papers presented dealt not with Massachusetts alone, but with the general problem of reconciling legitimate bargaining goals of public employees with the needs of the public for uninterrupted service. Two of the papers are presented below.
During the 1959 steel dispute, as I remember it, Professor George W. Taylor, Chairman of the board appointed by the President to investigate the matter, listened for days while the parties talked in the most general terms about the local working conditions clause, which was at issue. Then, in desperation, Taylor said, "We have been meeting for days and I have yet to hear anyone specifically discuss even one of the practices in the mills which supposedly are causing the trouble."
John Morse, of the Bethlehem Steel Company, and employer spokesman, replied: "That's true. But we have avoided going into details because we were afraid that we might get bogged down in particulars."