Davis thanked union lawyer Arthur Schwartz and Stations Vice President Robert Kelley for their work preparing the evidence and legal arguments needed to prevail. Edelman rendered his decision after holding several hearings over the last three months.

In the elevator case, the MTA sought earlier this summer to eliminate elevator operator jobs at the five deep-cavern stations in Washington Heights. Local 100 countered by filing a lawsuit contending the MTA would be violating the Public Authorities law, which requires public hearings, and the city Human Rights law, which protects the rights of the disabled. A Manhattan Supreme Court justice ruled last week in the union’s favor. She ordered the MTA to keep the 27 elevator operators at their posts. The Authority must hold hearings if it wants to move forward with the cuts, the judge ruled. It’s unclear if the MTA will go this route, but it would be a bumpy one, Kelley said. 

 “There will be a lot of angry riders and elected officials from Washington Heights,” Kelley said. “The MTA, which is raising fares, would be publicly forced to defend reducing customer service and access to stations at the same time.”

The judge in the elevator case left the door open to deciding the elevator staff cuts violates city Human Rights law for making it more difficult for the disabled to use the subway system. Local 100 was supported in the lawsuit by several elected officials: Congressman Adriano Espaillat, NY State Senator Robert Jackson, Assemblyman Manny De Los Santos, and NYC Councilwoman Carmen De La Rosa. All signed on as plaintiffs the court case.