Organizing Roundup

Local 118 

Webster Police Department 

Officers, sergeants, lieutenants and investigators of the Webster Police Department PBA recently voted in favor of joining Local 118 in Rochester, N.Y. 

Recognizing the increasing pressures on public sector funding and other variables that may impact employment, the Webster Police Department PBA leadership sought options that would enhance the representation and advocacy of the unit of 32 sworn officers of the department. 

“Joining Local 118 just makes sense. The depth in resources, knowledge and experience gives us the confidence we need to focus on public safety while knowing that our interests as employees are protected,” said Webster PBA President Sean Walsh. 

The Local 118 Law Enforcement Division represents members working in a wide range of positions within public safety. 

Local 251 

First Student 

In November, First Student school bus drivers voted 14-0 to join Local 251 to become the fifth First Student yard in Rhode Island to be represented by the union. The Teamsters also represent school transportation workers at four Ocean State Transit locations, for an approximate total of 1,000 members statewide. 

“The instability of the student transportation industry—along with concerns for their livelihood, health and personal safety during this pandemic—is causing much dismay amongst these and many other workers,” said Matthew Taibi, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 251. “They recognize that a Teamster contract provides guaranteed wage increases, benefits, bonuses and working conditions that cannot be changed on a whim by an employer.” 

Liz Taylor has been a driver at the Scituate location for four years. The organizing drive began with a phone call from her to the Teamsters back in March 2020. 

“After several conversations with Local 251 Organizer Mike Simone, I told everyone the Teamsters would fight just as hard for the new drivers as they would for the long-term drivers,” Taylor said. “We want fairness. We want to be treated with respect like the other Teamster school bus drivers in the state.” 

Local 332 

McLaren Flint Hospital 

Medical technologists and medical technicians who work at McLaren Flint Hospital in Flint, Mich., have voted to join Local 332. The group joins over 150 technical workers at McLaren Flint, including respiratory therapists, radiology technicians, MRI technicians and more, who were already Local 332 members. 

“We spend most of our time in the lab. People don’t know who we are or what we do, but the work we do is necessary for doctors in diagnosis and treatment,” said Duana Mofield, a 20-year medical technologist at McLaren Flint. 

Once the group decided to organize, they had to attend captive audience meetings and received fliers and other literature from management in an effort to stop their efforts to organize. Despite these efforts, the group was determined. 

“We are excited that medical technologists and technicians at McLaren Flint have joined our 150 existing technical bargaining unit members at the hospital, and we are eager to get to work for them and all health care workers who want a strong, collective union voice,” said Nina Bugbee, President of Local 332 and Director of the Teamsters Health Care Division. 

Local 773 

US Foods 

US Foods drivers in Allentown, Pa., won their union organizing campaign to become members of Local 773. Drivers are seeking improvements to health care and other benefits, an end to unfair work policies, and most importantly, winning a voice on the job. The Allentown location employs close to 120 drivers who are not only frontline workers during the COVID19 pandemic but have been fighting for years to gain respect and dignity on the job. 

“Our local welcomes and congratulates the delivery drivers at US Foods in Allentown. They fought hard to win this organizing campaign, and we will fight hard to get them a contract with better benefits, wages and working conditions,” said Local 773 President Dennis Hower. 

“The drivers at US Foods are so pleased to be joining our Teamster brothers and sisters across the country,” said Richard Rich, a 26-year driver. “US Foods used to be a good place to work, but over the years they took advantage of us and didn’t respect or listen to us. Now they can’t ignore us. We’ve made it resoundingly clear through our vote that we are Teamster strong.” 

Local 135 

Eagle Express 

Drivers, mechanics, office clerical and detailers at Eagle Express in Indianapolis have voted by a 6-to-1 ratio to become members of Local 135. Due to the pandemic, the election was conducted via mail-in ballot. 

“In spite of a pandemic, in spite of everything that was thrown their way during the campaign, these workers stood up for one another by building collective power and voting to form their union with the Teamsters,” said Danny L. Barton, President of Local 135. 

“I have been driving a truck for 26 years,” said Rodney Baker, one of the new Local 135 members. “I understand the difference we can make by coming together in a union. In a union, benefits and structure are centered around employees. You can retire with dignity. I have nine kids and 18 grandkids and I need some kind of security in my future. That’s why I voted yes.”