Press Releases

Oakland School Bus Drivers Choose Teamsters Representation


(OAKLAND, Calif.) – First Student school bus drivers in Oakland, Calif., have voted by an overwhelming 15-1 margin in favor of representation by Teamsters Local 853 in San Leandro, Calif. The 150 drivers transport children in the Oakland Unified School District.

“We are happy about our vote for the Teamsters. We need representation and a voice. We need a union to have our back,” said Jacqueline Pittman, a 20-year driver who works at First Student.

First Student became the transportation provider for Oakland schools this summer, after the school district chose to end a contract with Durham School Services, the previous transportation contractor.

“We are excited to represent another group of school bus drivers who do the important work of transporting our children,” said Rome Aloise, Teamsters Local 853 Secretary-Treasurer and International Vice President.

The drivers and monitors will be covered by the Teamsters’ national master agreement with First Student. The agreement covers over 21,000 Teamsters who work at First Student. Economics and individual gains will be negotiated by Teamsters Local 853.

Teamsters Local 853 represents over 11,000 members, including 1,000 members in the school bus industry.

The Teamsters Drive Up Standards campaign is a national campaign to improve safety, service and work standards in the private school bus and transit industry. Since the campaign began in 2006, more than 37,700 drivers, monitors, aides, attendants and mechanics have become Teamsters.

For information on the Teamsters Drive Up Standards campaign, go to

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and “like” us on Facebook at