(EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I.) – By standing together, Teamsters Local 251 members at DHLNH fought and won a first contract that demonstrates the power of a union.
“This is a strong first contract for workers willing to fight for one,” says Matt Maini, Teamsters Local 251 Business Agent. “These brave workers went on strike for nine weeks and demanded the respect that they deserve.”
Since joining Teamsters Local 251 in June 2017, DHLNH workers have seen big improvements. Upon ratification of the contract, workers will receive over 13 percent increases in starting wages, over 15 percent increases in average wages and six percent increases in wages the remaining three years. The group will also see over a 70 percent increase in company contributions toward healthcare. Other strong improvements include:
- Paid sick time;
- Increased vacation time;
- More paid holidays;
- Double time on Sundays;
- Job bidding;
- Safety protections;
- Paid sick time, discipline and grievance and arbitration to address concerns.
“We faced poverty wages, unsafe working conditions and disrespect by the company,” said Sarong Rath, a Local 251 DHLNH steward. “The solidarity we built over the last 14 months delivered a strong future.”
DHL Express clerical workers voted to join Local 251 separately, and were negotiated into the national agreement between the Teamsters and DHL Express. Their local agreement calls for strong wage improvements and fully-paid Teamster-sponsored healthcare.
“Honoring the picket line of our brothers and sisters at DHLNH tested our commitment,” said Steward Bethany Stamp. “But the Teamsters national contract and Local 251 contract delivers big improvements in working conditions, wages and benefits.”
“Teamsters 251 welcomes these 30 new members who stuck together in their righteous fight for fairness and decency in the workplace,” says Matt Taibi, Local 251 Principal Officer. “DHLNH had a history of wage theft, state wage & hour law violations and labor law violations. Forming a union is the only real way for workers to fight against these abuses.”