(CITY OF INDUSTRY, Calif.) – Food distribution drivers and warehouse workers at Roma Food, a Performance Food Group (PFG) company, are celebrating after winning a strong first contract as members of Teamsters Local 630 in Los Angeles. The new agreement covers 200 workers, including 110 drivers and 90 warehouse workers.
“Local 630 is committed to winning strong contracts in the foodservice industry. Every contract we negotiate is about raising standards across the board for our members. We are very proud of what we achieved in this agreement for our members at Roma Food,” said Lou Villalvazo, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 630.
The new contract ratified by Roma Food Teamsters in April includes substantial pay increases and an improved pay system for drivers. Instead of being paid by route, forcing drivers to work 14-16 hours a day, drivers are paid by the hour and receive overtime pay.
For Teamsters at the facility, having the protection of a new Teamster contract is especially rewarding after 15 long months of tough negotiations.
The fight for worker respect and dignity at Roma Food began in 2014 when the drivers sought representation to address issues at work, including disrespect, long hours, heavy workloads and a lack of job security. While hauling goods for the division of PFG, one of the largest private companies in the U.S. with almost $14 billion in annual revenue, the predominantly Latino group of drivers felt disrespected by the company.
In November of 2014 the drivers voted 84 percent in favor of Teamster representation despite the efforts of Jackson & Lewis, one of the leading union-avoidance consultants in the country.
It wasn’t long before warehouse workers at the facility were inspired by the drivers’ organizing success. Just a few months later in February 2015, Roma warehouse workers voted by a 3-to-1 margin to join Local 630. The workers inside the facility stood together for respect, a voice on the job and an end to substandard wages, benefits and working conditions.
PFG is a major competitor of Sysco and US Foods, where Teamster labor contracts set some of the highest standards in the industry.
“This agreement means our members at Roma, a PFG company, will be able to have a better life for themselves and their families. It also represents a blow to PFG’s low standards compared to other Teamster employers in the industry,” said Villalvazo.