Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News 07.01.15

Teamsters
Danafilms Workers Join Teamsters Local 170  Teamster.org  ...Production workers at Danafilms, a plastic film manufacturer in Westborough, Mass., voted to join Teamsters Local 170 in an election held in April. Ballots impounded after the vote were counted yesterday, resulting in a 23-13 count in favor of representation. There are 44 workers in the bargaining unit...
EVSC, Teamsters haven't reached agreements, current contracts expire at midnight  Courier & Press  ...The midnight deadline to reach an agreement was not met between the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. and Teamsters Local 215 negotiating teams, meaning the school corporation's contracts with secretaries, special education assistants, bus aides, custodians and bus drivers are expired...
EVSC, Teamsters Still Deadlocked on Contract  Tristate  ...The Evansville-Vanderburgh School Corporation and Teamsters Local 215 remain deadlocked on contract negotiations as the eleventh-hour approaches. The talks have started and stalled for months, and at midnight Wednesday the contract will expire, leaving an uncertain future for nearly 700 employees and their union representation...

Global Labor & Trade
Australian politicians slam TPP for ‘excessive secrecy’  RT  ...Australian lawmakers have slammed the country’s deal-making process as one lacking transparency and oversight. They’ve particularly criticized the currently negotiated Trans-Pacific Partnership for its “excessive secrecy.” The report, entitled the “Blind Agreement,” was a joint party report from the Labor, Liberal and Green parties...
Secret TPP Negotiations Denounced as “Undemocratic” in Peru  TeleSUR  ...On Tuesday, a group of Peruvian members of Congress and analysts denounced the secret negotiations of the US led Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty – or TPP – as undemocratic and an attempt by elites to force decisions on Peru. Together with 11 other countries, Peru has been negotiating TPP in secret, a trade agreement which could become the largest on the planet...
How the Trans-Pacific Partnership Will Hand Corporations the Reins to Our Government  In These Times  ...critics argue that within the hundreds of pages of esoteric provisions, the deal—like similar ones before it—includes a glaring double standard: It provides legal rights to corporations and investors that it does not extend to unions, public interest groups and individuals. Recently leaked drafts of the agreement show the pact includes the kind of “Investor-State Dispute Settlement” (ISDS) provisions written into most major trade deals...
Administration objects to Israeli-linked provision in trade bill  Politico  ...A day after President Barack Obama signed a key trade bill, his administration publicly stated its objection to a provision of the measure that critics say appears to legitimize Israeli settlements in Palestinian-claimed territories. The amendment to the trade law instructs U.S. trade negotiators to try to discourage foreign governments, especially in Europe, from signing on to the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement...
Austerity ‘condemns’ children to poverty – report to UN  RT  ...Young people in the UK risk falling deeper into poverty if the government continues to make cuts to welfare programs, Britain’s four children’s commissioners have said. In a report for the United Nations, the commissioners say austerity policies have already pushed 2.3 million children into poverty with the figure set to hit 4.7 million by 2020...
Tube strike: RMT and TSSA union workers vote to go on strike  BBC  ...More London Underground workers have voted to strike in a dispute over the new all-night Tube service. Members of the RMT and TSSA unions backed industrial action following a similar vote by drivers. Workers in these unions will now join a planned 24-hour walkout by members of the drivers' union Aslef, which begins at 21:30 BST on 8 July...
GM Korea workers vote in favor of strike over pay, output   Reuters  ...General Motors Co employees in South Korea voted on Wednesday in favour of a strike over wages and production volumes, prompted by uncertainty over the U.S. auto maker's output plans as its labor costs in the country rise. South Korea's National Labor Relations Commission is expected to meet on July 6 to decide whether to order a 10-day arbitration period, according to the company and the workers' union...
Greece debt crisis: Tsipras in new bailout 'concessions'  BBC  ...Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has offered new concessions to the country's creditors. A letter to creditors sent by Mr Tsipras says he was prepared to accept most conditions that were on the table before talks collapsed and he called a referendum. On Tuesday, eurozone finance ministers refused to extend the previous bailout...

State & Living Wage Battles
Paid Sick Leave Law Gives California Employees More Time Off  CBS  ...Paid sick days are no longer an option for California employers as a new law takes effect this week. Baristas Kyla Wiegand and Eduard Andrusyak are part-time employees at Chocolate Fish Coffee Roasters in East Sacramento. But come Wednesday, a new benefit is brewing at work—paid sick leave...
A Chris Christie presidency would be 'very disturbing', New Jerseyans warn  The Guardian  ...As he prepares to unveil his presidential campaign on Tuesday, Chris Christie is promising American voters that he will tell it to them straight – New Jersey-style. New Jersey has a straight message for American voters, too: run away. Criticism of Christie in his home state, where a Monmouth University poll last month tracked his favorability rating at a record low of 35%, is not confined to teachers. In a blistering editorial published at the weekend, the Newark Star-Ledger warned, bluntly: “He lies”...
Inside The Push To End A State’s ‘Ugly Policy’ Targeting Poor Mothers  Think Progress  ...In most states, when a family in need has a new child, their welfare benefits increase to cover the extra costs that come with a new family member. But 16 other states operate differently, limiting benefits after a certain number of children. There’s no evidence that these limits have the desired result — in fact, people on welfare have the same sized families as those who don’t enroll, and there is strong evidence that these caps increase poverty...
The Curious Case of Puerto Rico, And Why Default Poses A Risk To The U.S.  Huffington Post  ...U.S. lawmakers have no firm plan to help more than 3 million American citizens living 1,000 miles off the coast of Florida under a government staring down the barrel of a $73 billion debt crisis. Those U.S. citizens live in the territory of Puerto Rico. Thousands of them are fleeing each month to the U.S. mainland in the search of economic opportunity, compounding the island’s financial crisis...
West Virginia's prevailing wage set to temporarily expire  WOWKTV  ...West Virginia's prevailing wage is set expire Tuesday at midnight, as WorkForce West Virginia and economists with West Virginia University and Marshall University continue to work on a new calculation method. During the 2015 regular legislative session, state lawmakers passed a bill to change the way prevailing wage is calculated...
Minimum Wage Increase Takes Effect in Chicago  NBC  ...Minimum wage employees in Chicago will begin earning $10 an hour Wednesday as the first part of a yearly incremental minimum wage increase takes effect in the city. The $1.75 hourly bump is part of a plan aimed at raising the minimum wage in the city to $13 an hour by 2019...
Starting today, the D.C. minimum wage jumps to $10.50  Washington Post  ...D.C.’s minimum-wage workers will get a city-mandated increase in their paychecks beginning Wednesday, when their hourly wage bumps from $9.50 to $10.50. The hike is part of legislation signed into law in January 2014 that brought the District’s minimum wage from $8.25 to an eventual $11.50 per hour in 2016...
Minimum wage ordinance upheld by judge  Courier-Journal  ...Louisville workers can expect a pay raise starting July 1 after a Jefferson County Circuit judge on Monday upheld an ordinance raising the city's minimum wage to $9 an hour over the next three years. In a four-page ruling, Circuit Judge Judith McDonald-Burkman said state law establishes a floor for wages that does not expressly authorize or forbid a local government from raising workers' pay rates...

U.S. Labor
Obama and labor reconcile, sort of, on overtime  Politico  ...What a difference a day makes. Last week, President Barack Obama was a traitor to progressive groups and unions for pushing his trade agenda through Congress. This week, he’s their hero for putting forward a regulation to expand overtime, which would give an estimated 5 million Americans a raise...
The Rise Of Anti-Union Rhetoric In The 2016 Race  Think Progress  ...This week, the Supreme Court agreed to take a case that could spell doom for public sector unions, with the potential to make the entire country so-called “right-to-work” territory. If that effort fails, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has vowed to make every state a “right-to-work” state if elected president. But while Walker may be the loudest and proudest union buster in the 2016 race, his fellow candidates are also striving to prove their anti-labor bona fides...
Supreme Court will hear case on public sector union fees  Aljazeera  ...A case that will soon be heard before the Supreme Court has the potential to institute a de facto right-to-work regime across the entire public sector. The Court said on Tuesday it would soon hear arguments in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association (CTA), a case concerning government employee unions' ability to gather fees from non-members...
With New Overtime Rule, President Obama May Have Given an Estimated 5 Million Workers a Raise  In These Times  ...President Obama’s administration took another promised step on Tuesday towards raising the living standards of American workers, and Republicans and business groups are not likely to be able to stop it. Using the administration’s power to update workplace rules regarding premium pay for overtime work, the Department of Labor on Tuesday began taking steps that could bring higher pay or more leisure time to an estimated 5 million middle-income workers by next year...
Santa Clara County, SEIU Reach 11th Hour Deal to Avoid Strike  San Jose Inside  ...Hours before thousands of workers planned to walk off the job, Santa Clara County's largest employee union reached a tentative four-year agreement after 72 straight hours of bargaining. The 11th hour deal reached at 4:30am today came in time for Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 521 to call off the 6am strike...
USW Offers to Remain at Work at ATI While Continuing to Bargain for a New Agreement  PR Newswire  ...Late Tuesday evening, the United Steelworkers (USW) offered to continue working following the expiration of the current labor agreement with Allegheny Technologies Incorporated (ATI), and to continue negotiations for a fair agreement. While the differences between the parties are quite significant, the USW believes the company should depart from its current, nonsense course of hiring temporary replacement workers and security goons...
Milwaukee County bus drivers strike, scrambling commute  St. Louis Post-Dispatch  ..Hundreds of Milwaukee County union bus drivers went on strike early Wednesday, leaving tens of thousands of commuters scrambling to make alternative plans to get to work and elsewhere. The roughly 750 drivers walked off the job at 3 a.m. Amalgamated Transit Union Local 998 leaders said the strike would last until Saturday...
Victoria’s Secret Is Getting Rid Of On-Call Scheduling In Stores  Buzzfeed  ...Victoria’s Secret is ending the use of on-call scheduling in its stores, employees were told yesterday — a major reversal of a policy that wreaked havoc on the lives of tens of thousands of retail workers across the country.
The chain told employees it would no longer use the controversial scheduling practice, which requires staff to be available for shifts that can be cancelled at the last minute...
GOP's New Attack on Social Security's Disability Benefits: Exaggerate Number Of Claims  Alternet  ...Congressional Republicans are trying to block a routine reallocation of funds to the SSDI Trust Fund, insisting that they will only allow reallocation if “reforms” to SSDI are implemented. The intellectual underpinning for their demands is that there is an unfolding fiscal crisis caused by workers who are able to earn a living but are instead choosing to claim disability benefits. However, a closer look at the evidence shows that SSDI benefits have become, if anything, less generous...

Miscellaneous
Ruling Against "Three Strikes" Sentencing Law Opens Door to Reform  Truthout  ...Friday's Supreme Court decision in Johnson v. United States highlights the complicated nature of sentencing provisions that result in lengthy prison terms, a leading cause of mass incarceration. The ruling struck down a sentencing provision that lengthened prison terms for certain federal prisoners and potentially impacts the lives of thousands of people who have received enhanced federal sentences...
White Racism, NIMBYism, And The Surprise Supreme Court Ruling That Could Finally Desegregate Cities  Think Progress   ...The people who fight housing discrimination and residential segregation in America were bracing for a defeat last Thursday when the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruled on Texas Department of Housing v. Inclusive Communities Project. But instead of gutting a decades old legal theory known as “disparate impact,” as court watchers had predicted, Justice Anthony Kennedy penned a strong defense of the anti-racism tool on behalf of a 5-4 majority...
High Court's Ruling, Say Critics, Endorses 'Torturing People to Death'  Common Dreams  ...In the most closely-watched death penalty case in years, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled 5-4 (pdf) that Oklahoma can use the controversial and experimental execution drug midazolam that was behind the last year's horrific killing of 38-year-old man Clayton Lockett—who writhed and groaned for 43 minutes before ultimately succumbing to a heart attack...
U.S. and Cuba to Re-Establish Diplomatic Ties, Reopen Embassies After 50 Years  Slate  ...The gradual warming of relations between the U.S. and Cuba continued on Tuesday with the news that the two will formally restore diplomatic relations and reopen embassies. The final agreement is expected to be announced on Wednesday and the U.S. embassy is Havana should be up and running in July. U.S. diplomatic ties with Cuba were severed in 1961 following Castro’s ascent to power during the Cuban revolution...
US police killings headed for 1,100 this year, with black Americans twice as likely to die  The Guardian  ...Police in the United States are killing people at a rate that would result in 1,100 fatalities by the end of this year, according to a Guardian investigation, which recorded an average of three people killed per day during the first half of 2015. The Counted, a project working to report and crowdsource names and a series of other data on every death caused by law enforcement in the US this year, found that 547 people had been killed by the end of June...

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