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Local Lodges of the United Passenger Rail Federation

“What can labor do for itself? Labor can organize, it can unify, it can consolidate its forces. This done, it can demand and command.”

Eugene V. Debs, president, American Railway Union 

Local Lodges form the direct link between the member and the Brotherhood, and are the grassroots segment of the organization. Regular meetings are held by most Lodges at which information is passed onto the membership and the affairs of the Brotherhood are discussed and acted upon. The members of the Lodges elect their own Officers as well as the delegates who will represent them at National Division and System Division/Federation Conventions to determine policies, adopt laws to govern activities, and elect National Division and System Officers and State Legislative Directors.

Organizational Charts for our BMWED Lodges


Transfer Lodge form - for electing to affiliate with the local lodge of your choosing. 

Local Election Guide - Guide for conducting local lodge elections 

Building Membership Participation - a pamphlet from the Teamster International  that offers ideas for building and maintaining membership participation within your local lodge through a structured communication system, on-going education and planned actions.

Lodge President

The general affairs of the Lodge are overseen by the Lodge President. The Lodge President presides over Lodge meetings, preserves decorum and decides all questions of order subject to an appeal to the Lodge members. The President is also responsible for seeing that a correct audit of the Secretary- Treasurer’s books is made by the Auditing Committee. The President appoints all committees, except the Auditing Committee and the Grievance Committee, which are elected. The President also casts the deciding vote on all questions in case of a tie vote. Finally, the President assists in the execution and filing of any required reports and maintenance of Lodge records required by law.

Lodge Vice President

The Vice President assists the President in the performance of various duties and presides over all Lodge meetings in the absence of the President.

Lodge Secretary-Treasurer

The financial and business affairs of the Lodge are handled by the Secretary-Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer receives all communications, conducts the correspondence and has charge of the seal and records of the Lodge. Additional responsibilities include keeping a correct account between the Lodge and the System Secretary-Treasurer and/or National Division Secretary-Treasurer. A Lodge is not permitted to contract or incur any obligation of any kind beyond the extent of the Lodge’s funds and current income of the Lodge. The money and property of the Lodge may only be used for the benefit of the Lodge and not for the personal gain or profit of an Officer or member.

Lodge Recording Secretary

Typically, this position is combined with the Secretary-Treasurer’s position. The Recording Secretary keeps a true and correct record of the proceedings of each meeting of the Lodge and reads the same at the next meeting for action thereon. The Recording Secretary also reads all communications from the National Division, System Division/Federation, or other sources that are of interest to members.

Lodge Local Chairperson

The Local Lodge Local Chairperson shall assist any member of his lodge to start the handling of controversial matters with his immediate superior. If same is adjusted favorably, the decision shall be reported to the Vice Chairperson. If the decision is unfavorable, all papers and information that can be obtained must be turned over to the Vice Chairperson, who shall then proceed to handle the controversy with the management. If the Vice Chairperson, or the membership of any Local Lodge, feel that their Local Lodge Local Chairperson should accompany him to meetings with the management, it shall be the duty of the Local Lodge Local Chairperson to do so.

Lodge Legislative Representative

The Lodge Legislative Representative is responsible for communicating matters of legislative importance, both Federal and State, to the members of their Local Lodge, at the direction of the National and State Legislative Directors of the BMWED. Each Local Lodge elects a Legislative Representative and a Vice Legislative Representative for each state their Local has members residing in. The primary duty of the Lodge’s Legislative Representative(s) is to attend their State’s Legislative Convention, held every four years.

Lodge Auditing Committee

The members of the Auditing Committee have the responsibility of examining the financial affairs of the Lodge. They meet and audit the Lodge books not later than thirty days after the end of each quarter.

Lodge Grievance Committee

The Officers of the Grievance Committee perform such duties as are prescribed in the National Division Bylaws, which includes assisting the Local and/or Division Chairmen in the discharge of their duties. Each System Division/Federation has established procedures for the handling of claims and grievances, which are best suited to the needs of their membership.

National Division Convention

The National Division Convention is held every four years. Each Lodge is entitled to send a delegate or alternate who must be eligible and elected in accordance with National Division Bylaws and the Merger Agreement. The purpose of the National Division Convention is to review the work and accomplishments of the Brotherhood, consider legislation for the benefit and advancement of the membership, amend the Bylaws, elect officers, and act upon such other business as may properly come before it.



Conducting a Local Union Meeting - Parliamentary Procedure, Motions, Chairing a Meeting, all discussed in this simple guide.


Next to a scab, a snitch or an informer is one of the lowest forms of humanity. All we have is our ability to stick together. Statements given to railroad management and their agents will only be used against you. Management is not interested in the truth and is only interested in protecting their money at our expense. Be careful what you say and never volunteer any information.

Remember, nobody likes a snitch. No one can say you saw something that you did not see. This includes but is not limited to injuries, investigations and accidents of all kinds.

"An Injury To One Is An Injury To All"

Page Last Updated: Aug 30, 2023 (07:04:51)
United Passenger Rail Federation BMWED-IBT
190 South Broad Street
Trenton, NJ 08608

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