Day Two: Organizing, Organizing, Organizing


Teamsters discuss the hard but exhilarating work of organizing and running a union on Day Two of their 28th convention. 

Organizing will be the focus, especially in the school bus, airline, and freight industries.

Featured speakers will include Newark Mayor Corey Booker, Ohio Rep. Steve LaTourette, SEIU President Mary Kay Henry and Steve Turner, international representative with British trade union UNITE.

Teamsters are expected to offer up lively discussion over resolutions, as they did on Monday.

If there was one takeaway from Monday’s session, it was that the recent assault on workers wasn’t going to fade away.

“Their greed knows no end,” said Bob Bouvier, president of Teamsters Canada. The war on workers he said, is not just in the U.S., it’s not just in Canada, it’s not just in Puerto Rico, it’s around the world.

“They’re not going to get us, we’re going to get them,” he said.

And so a resolution to Stop the War on Workers was passed unanimously.

International Vice President Tyson Johnson gave a no-nonsense account of the dangers in opening the border to dangerous Mexican trucks. Mario Leva, a shop steward with Local 745, described the dangers of Mexico’s violent drug cartels across the border from his home in El Paso.  A resolution opposing the latest pilot program to open the border to Mexican trucks won unanimous support.  So did a resolution to support public workers.

The Teamsters enthusiastically supported a resolution to “continue to fight and to lobby against any trade agreement that does not increase jobs in the U.S. and protect workers’ rights.” And following speeches on right-to-work bills to destroy unions, Teamsters endorsed a resolution that opposing right to work “should remain a paramount priority for the Teamsters Union, working families, and allies throughout the country as to ensure that a strong and vibrant American middle class continues.”