Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News 04.15.15

Teamsters
San Bernardino Public Employees Vote To Become Teamsters  Teamster.org   ...San Bernardino County public employees have voted to affiliate with the Teamsters Union, paving the way for more than 13,500 workers to have a more secure future, Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa announced today. About 61 percent voted in favor of Teamster representation. The workers had been solely represented by the San Bernardino Public Employees Association (SBPEA), but now they have the added benefits of Teamster representation...
Air Canada Teamsters Ratify New Contract  TeamsterAir.org   ...A new contract covering more than 500 U.S.-based Air Canada employees was ratified by Teamster members who voted 200-to-101 in favor of the agreement. The seven-year contract includes wage increase, job security and improved benefits...
Hoffa: When ‘open skies’ means unfair advantage  Detroit News   ...Unfair labor practices are once again hurting U.S. workers and threatening jobs here in Michigan and across America. This time, the threat is coming from overseas, as three airlines from the Middle East — Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways and Emirates — are embracing shady financial practices and anti-worker policies to undercut U.S. companies...
Maryland Teamsters Endorse Chris Van Hollen  Washington Post   ...Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) has scored the first union endorsement in the race to replace Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), winning support from a Maryland branch of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. The Baltimore-based union represents about 10,000 families in the state...
Helen Gym Receives Three More Labor Endorsements  Politics PA   ...Helen Gym, candidate for Philadelphia City Council At-Large, today announced the endorsements of three new labor groups. The former teacher scored endorsements from the Teamsters Local 502 - the Commonwealth Association of School Administrators; AFT Local 2026 - the Faculty and Staff Federation of Community College of Philadelphia; and the AFSCME District Council 47...
Judge Supports Sandpiper Pipeline In Northern Minnesota  Minneapolis Star Tribune   ...Enbridge Energy’s plans for a new pipeline to carry North Dakota crude oil across northern Minnesota got a major boost Monday when an administrative judge concluded that the Sandpiper project is needed — and that other proposed routes are not as good...
Conductor Dies On The Job At Saskatchewan Rail Yard  Occupational Health & Safety Canada   ...The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) sent a team of investigators to the scene of the incident, according to a press release. The release noted that the incident had involved the death of a Canadian National Rail (CN) employee, but no other information was available from the TSB as of press time...

Global Labor & Trade
Inside The White House’s War On The Left Over Trade   Buzzfeed   ...The story is just one of many from recent weeks as the White House executes an aggressive, furious, localized effort to break progressive opposition to one of its top priorities: President Obama’s trade agenda. Unions, activists, and progressive lawmakers have united against the “fast track” authority Obama seeks to put back into place...
Battle for Oregon highlights Obama's free-trade challenge  Reuters  ...With 44 percent of Oregon's exports already heading to the Trans Pacific Partnership countries and an estimated one in five jobs dependent on trade, local businesses are lobbying for the 12-nation pact. Yet scars from two decades of globalization and fears that big business will hijack the agenda make even many of those who may benefit from more trade apprehensive...
Leading House Democrat Will Oppose TPP Fast Track  The Nation  ...As legislation to fast-track congressional approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership gets ready to finally make its debut in Congress this week, Representative Chris Van Hollen, the ranking member of the House Budget Committee, wrote in a letter to the ranking member of the House Ways & Means Committee that he would oppose fast-track authority...
As Bills Advance, Will Grassroots Resistance Finally Overcome Fast Track Push?  Common Dreams  ...Signaling that loud grassroots resistance may be working, congressional Democrats are failing to get behind the White House's push for unilateral authority over the secretive 12-nation trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), according to news reports on Tuesday...
TTIP: MEPs Differ On Safeguards For Data, Services, Environment And Investment  European Parliment News   ...Eight hundred and ninety-eight amendments to a draft resolution on progress in talks with the US on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) were debated by the International Trade Committee on Monday...
The Worst Deal You’ve Never Heard Of – Outrage, Please!  (opinion) Ben & Jerry's   ...Hey, what is the global economy for, anyway? Creating profits for a few, or prosperity for everyone? We don’t like the looks of the two trade agreements currently being negotiated in secret by corporations and governments around the world. And this week Congress may make a BIG mistake – putting these agreements on the ‘Fast Track’ to becoming a reality...

State & Living Wage Battles
Nevada Minimum Wage Change Bills Dead In Legislature  KRNV   ...Two proposed constitutional changes to Nevada's minimum wage will not go forward. SJR 6 and SJR 8 would have changed Nevada's constitutionally required minimum wage but both resolutions didn't receive a committee vote by Friday's deadline...
Reeling from Gov. Pence's 'religious freedom' debacle, Indiana hires global PR firm to repair image  Daily Kos  ...Here's something Indiana lawmakers probably didn't account for in their annual budget -- spending $2 million on a global public relations firm to stanch the bleeding from the "right to discriminate" bill they enacted...
Campaign to begin for a $15 minimum wage in D.C.   Washington Post  ...A coalition of labor and social justice groups plan to kick off a ballot-measure campaign Wednesday for a $15 minimum wage in the nation’s capital, an hourly rate more than twice the federal minimum that could make D.C. ground zero in a growing national debate over income inequality...
NH voter ID law imperils privacy  (opinion) The Telegraph  ...What hasn’t received much attention is an ill-conceived policy change that would place new financial and logistical hardships on already overburdened election officials, violate the privacy rights of voters and all but guarantee a patchwork, unequal application of our election laws from one polling place to another...
Fast-food strikes widen into social-justice movement  USA Today  ...Organizers are calling it the largest-ever mobilization of U.S. workers seeking higher pay. That's yet to be determined. But what began on Tuesday with several low-wage worker protests and marches in Boston and Detroit started seriously expanding nationwide on Wednesday beginning shortly after 6 a.m. at a McDonald's in New York City...
The Courage of Low-Wage Workers On Strike  In These Times   ...Hedges, the fired Delta worker, put it another way: “a lot of the better paid workers also understand that the bottom has to be raised otherwise the top is going to fall as well.” If for no other reason than self-interest, join the gutsy minimum-wage workers at a Fight for $15 event Wednesday...
Women Still Earn A Lot Less Than Men (opinion)  New York Times   ...In 1963, when President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act, a woman working full time year-round typically made 59 cents for every dollar paid to her male counterpart. By 2013, the latest year of available census data, it was 78 cents on the dollar. Another measure of the wage gap, computed by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, shows that, in 2014, the ratio of female-to-male weekly earnings was 82.5 percent...

U.S. Labor
DoubleTree Hotel Workers Approve Unionization  The Harvard Crimson   ...Following a campaign of more than two years that included demonstrations, a strike, and a boycott, workers at the Soldiers Field Road DoubleTree Hotel, a Hilton Hotels enterprise housed in a building owned by Harvard, have organized with the UNITE HERE! Local 26 union, according to workers and union representatives...
One Year Later, NLRB Still Hasn't Ruled On Appeal Of Whether College Football Players May Unionize  Forbes   ...More than one year after the National Labor Relations Board’s 13th Region ruled that college athletes are employees and thus may unionize,  Northwestern University’s appeal of the regional board decision remains unresolved.  Although the full National Labor Relations Board has decided numerous more recent disputes,  there is still no word on when a decision can be expected in this very important case...
USW Members Voting on LyondellBasell Contract Today  Houston Press  ...More than two months in, the United Steelworkers oil refinery strike still isn't technically over, but things could wrap up soon for the USW District 227 workers at LyondellBasell in Pasadena. By putting down this last, best and final offer, the company is calling on USW 227 members to actually vote on the contract. If the majority votes yes, then company officials and union reps will start working out a return-to-work agreement...
One Company’s New Minimum Wage: $70,000 A Year  New York Times   ...If it’s a publicity stunt, it’s a costly one. Mr. Price, who started the Seattle-based credit-card payment processing firm in 2004 at the age of 19, said he would pay for the wage increases by cutting his own salary from nearly $1 million to $70,000 and using 75 to 80 percent of the company’s anticipated $2.2 million in profit this year...
Chris Christie Pitches Social Security Cuts That Would Help Wall Street Take Over Retirement System  Think Progress   ...Christie has a track record in New Jersey of making big promises to retirees and then walking away from them. And this newest, national promise isn’t even a particularly effective one. Opponents of benefit cuts denounced the governor’s approach as the first stage in a gradual assault on an immensely popular program...

Miscellaneous
The Numbers Are Staggering: U.S. Is 'World Leader' in Child Poverty  Alternet   ...America's wealth grew by 60 percent in the past six years, by over $30 trillion. In approximately the same time, the number of homeless children has also grown by 60 percent. Over half of public school students are poor enough to qualify for lunch subsidies, and almost half of black children under the age of six are living in poverty...
U.S. Budget Deficit Widens, Ending Run Of Shrinkage  Wall Street Journal   ...The U.S. budget deficit widened slightly during the first half of the 2015 fiscal year, ending a streak of sustained declines. The Treasury ran a deficit of $439 billion during the first half of the fiscal year begun Oct. 1, up 6% from a year earlier, the Treasury Department said Monday in its monthly report...