Scores of Teamster business agents from all over the country descended on Capitol Hill recently to talk to their lawmakers about a top concern of the union: pension reform. There, they shared their stories about why House and Senate members, no matter what their party affiliation, should back the Butch Lewis Act of 2017.
These Teamsters told members of Congress that change must be made and what could happen to America’s economy if failing multiemployer pension plans aren’t fixed.
“Our local does get calls each day about pensions,” said Zach Peterson, a business agent with Local 238 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “This isn’t just a Teamster issue. If this doesn’t get resolved this will be a much larger economic issue. Many won’t have money to spend.”
Tracy Leone, also a business agent from Local 238, said ultimately the government is going to have to pay to help the 1.5 million people affected by underfunded multiemployer plans. So it should do the right thing.
“We can spend money now or spend money later and hurt people we don’t need to hurt,” she said.
That’s the message business agents took to their representatives. And it’s one all on Capitol Hill should understand. Workers aren’t seeking a bailout. They just want fairness.