Labor Disputes Continue to Grow at US Foods; Local 171 and Local 773 Members Prepare to Walk Off the Job
(WASHINGTON) — Work stoppages at US Foods [NYSE: USFD] are looming, the Teamsters Union announced today. More than 200 members of Teamsters Local 171 in Salem, Va., and Teamsters Local 773 in Allentown, Pa., are currently in contentious contract negotiations with the company and are prepared to take action if a deal isn’t reached during the next round of collective bargaining.
There are at least 22 US Foods locations where the Teamsters have the right to honor picket lines in the event of a strike in Pennsylvania and Virginia.
“We’ve been negotiating for a year and a half. The company told us we were ‘essential’ during the pandemic. Now they are dragging their feet and violating the law instead of treating us fairly. We are prepared to take action and ready to go out on a work stoppage to win the wages, benefits, and working conditions we deserve,” said Chris Nothstein, a 25-year Teamster driver at US Foods and Local 773 member in Allentown, Pa.
Nothstein and his co-workers in Allentown have been fighting for a contract since voting to join Local 773 in January 2021. There are 104 drivers in the bargaining unit.
“We have bargained extensively with the company, but little progress has been made. We are far from where we need to be, and our members are tired of the company’s stall tactics. US Foods is dragging its feet, and Teamsters Local 773 is fed up. If things don’t change drastically during this next round of negotiations, we will be taking serious action,” said Brian Taylor, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 773.
Workers in Allentown aren’t the only US Foods workers who are ready to act against the company’s anti-union behavior. Approximately 120 drivers in Salem, Va., voted to join Local 171 in July 2021. Since then, the company has committed numerous violations of federal labor law, including illegally terminating drivers, retaliating against drivers who support the union, and bargaining in bad faith.
“The Teamsters are gearing up for a fight at US Foods. Our members have been patient long enough. They are ready to show this company that the workers have the power,” said Todd Robertson, President of Local 171.
The company has violated federal labor laws in locations nationwide and is currently being investigated by the National Labor Relations Board for several allegations of unfair labor practices. These include illegal terminations, unilaterally changing working conditions, and bargaining in bad faith with union representatives.
“Our members are ready to fight. If US Foods fails to negotiate a fair contract in good faith, these essential workers will take to the streets — and they will have the backing of 1.2 million Teamsters behind them,” said Tom Erickson, International Vice President and Director of the Teamsters Warehouse Division.
US Foods is the third largest broadline foodservice distributor in the U.S. with more than 400,000 products and approximately 300,000 customers, servicing restaurants, hospitals, and schools via more than 70 distribution facilities. The Teamsters represent more than 4,800 members at US Foods.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.2 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit http://www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter at @Teamsters and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/teamsters.