The trade union SNRTGS, which was affiliated to the CFTC until June 2009, in letters dated 2 April 2010 appointed an employee as union representative and central union representative. The company applied to the Magistrates’ Court of for an order cancelling such appointments.
As its claims were dismissed, it filed an appeal with the French Supreme Court.
It contended in particular that whenever a trade union has disaffiliated from one of the five union organisations which are recognised as representing employees at national level, in order to be entitled to appoint a union representative during the transitional period implemented by the Law of 20 August 2008, it is mandatory for the trade union in question to prove that it is representative of the employees within the company on the date of appointment by demonstrating that it satisfies the criteria stipulated by the Labour Code and that, in demonstrating its influence, the SNRTGS was not entitled to invoke the activities it pursued and the experience it acquired prior to its disaffiliation from the CFTC.
The French Supreme Court dismissed the appeal, ruling that “in order to assess the influence of a trade union, a criterion relevant to whether it is sufficiently representative, which is characterised first and foremost by its activities and experience, the Court must take into account all of its actions, including those pursued when it was affiliated with a confederation of trade unions from which it subsequently disaffiliated” (Cass. Soc. 28 September 2011, no. 10-26545).