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Waste Workers Win Card-Check Recognition In New Hampshire

Waste workers with Casella Waste Systems in Brentwood, N.H., will now be represented by the Teamsters Union, after Local 633 in Manchester, N.H., secured a card-check agreement. The workers overwhelmingly signed up to become Teamster members.

The 17 new members work as waste drivers, helpers, transfer station operators and mechanics.

Casella, based in Rutland, Vt., recently expanded their operations, purchasing Best Way Disposal Services in Brentwood, N.H. Casella also has a facility in nearby Salem, N.H., that is under contract with Local 633. Because some of the work areas overlap, the workers in Brentwood had concerns that they may be negatively impacted by the purchase. The workers reached out to Joint Council 10 organizer Roger Travers, who under the direction of principal officer David Laughton, started a campaign to organize the Brentwood workers.

“Casella is a bigger organization than we were used to; it’s publicly traded. We thought we should organize for the support to get us through the transition and keep us strong as a group. We wanted representation,” said John Lavigne, a head mechanic in Brentwood who maintains 21 waste trucks. 

Rogers Travers contacted Local 633 Business Agent Jeff Padellaro, who then started discussions with the company to see if there was an option for card-check recognition. Jeff Padellaro worked with Local 633 Business Agent Rick Laughton, who works with the Salem group, to make sure there was a way to get this group under a Teamster contract. Travers and Laughton met with the group to get authorization cards signed. In the meantime, Padellaro was finalizing the agreement for card-check recognition.

When all the pieces were in place David Laughton, Teamsters Joint Council 10 and Local 633 Secretary-Treasurer, gave the go-ahead and the cards were certified by a local public official.

“This is a textbook example of the Joint Council working with a local union to get deserving workers the chance to have a Teamster contract. We want to welcome the workers at Casella in Brentwood to Teamsters Local 633,” Laughton said.

“The Teamsters Union continues to organize and build on our successes. We look forward to more successful wins for workers to come,” said Bob Morales, Director of the Teamsters Solid Waste, Recycling and Related Industries Division.

The first negotiation session with Casella is scheduled for August 6.