One of the most vital elements of effective representation is communicating with members. Mark Davison, President of Teamsters Local 162 in Portland, Oregon, understands that well.
“Real world examples are the best way to educate our members on the contract and there is no shortage of material to fill the pages of ‘What’s UPS’,” Davison said, referring to Local 162’s newsletter geared toward its UPS member.
The local publishes the periodic newsletter – which it calls “What’s UPS: Local 162’s View of the Big Brown” – for its members working at five different UPS facilities in the Portland area.
Contract enforcement and education are a central theme of What’s UPS and Local 162 takes a unique and often satirical look on current events and grievances at UPS.
“We deliver the news with some satire, comedy and an occasional cartoon, because it attracts our members’ attention and they look forward to reading it,” Davison added.
All of the Local 162 business agents and shop stewards personally hand out more than 2,200 copies of What’s UPS at the hub gates. The local publishes as few as four editions per year and as many as eight when a higher volume of issues is needed.
Local 162 also puts out survival editions of What’s UPS. With more than 200 new package drivers hired in the last five years in the Portland area, the local recently handed out a 16-page “What’s UPS – Package Driver Survival Edition”.
So what’s in the Survival Edition?
“Area practices and panel decisions are not listed in the contract,” Davison explained. “We do that in What’s UPS and we expand on them in our survival editions. Our part-time and full-time inside workers’ survival edition is in development as well.”