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Teamsters Launch Campaign: 'FedEx Drivers Aren't Pilots'

(WASHINGTON) — Ground control to FedEx: Your drivers aren’t pilots.

The Teamsters Union launched a campaign today to level the playing field in the package delivery industry. Through advertising, a website and videos, the Teamsters are urging Congress to pass legislation closing the loophole that gives FedEx (NYSE: FDX) a special status. That status allows FedEx Express to treat its truck drivers as airline workers.

“This is a simple issue of fairness,” said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. “No company should be able to hide behind a special deal bought by political influence. It’s time to level the playing field and close the FedEx loophole.”

Through the new website,, the campaign points out that FedEx Express is the only freight and package delivery company in the United States allowed to classify truck drivers, sorters, loaders and unloaders as airline workers. More than 90,000 FedEx Express employees who never even touch an airplane are treated as airline workers under the Railway Labor Act. Truck drivers, sorters, loaders and unloaders at small businesses, UPS and every other freight and package delivery company in the United States are under the National Labor Relations Act.

“Have you ever had a FedEx package delivered to your house by airplane? Of course not,” said Ken Hall, Teamsters Vice President and Package Division Director. “FedEx’s attempt to preserve its special political favor by arguing the company is an airline is absolutely ridiculous.”

FedEx has about 13,000 more truck drivers than UPS, according to the U.S. Transportation Department. Recently, FedEx trucks logged about 165 million more miles per year than UPS.

Congress is currently considering legislation, the Express Carrier Employee Protection Act, to end the special treatment that FedEx lobbyists won in 1996. The measure would establish one set of rules for all package delivery companies. The provision is in the House-passed version of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Bill, which also includes important safety measures for the traveling public and the industry, and would create more than 125,000 new jobs each year.

The “FedEx Drivers Aren’t Pilots” campaign includes advertising and a video highlighting the absurdity of truck drivers being treated the same as airline pilots. The effort also will mobilize concerned citizens from across the country, including 1.4 million Teamsters, to voice their support for a level playing field.

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Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, including 250,000 workers at UPS.

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