Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News 10.05.15

TEAMSTERS
Hoffa Says Tenuous TPP Agreement Does Not Listen to Workers' Concerns  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa in response to trade officials reaching an agreement on the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a deal which would lead to thousands of U.S. jobs being shipped overseas and unsafe food and products flooding our store shelves. “Bum trade deals like NAFTA have killed upwards of 1 million U.S. jobs, many of which moved abroad. And that’s the concern with the looming TPP"...
Don't break faith with workers on multiemployer pension plans: Marcy Kaptur and James P. Hoffa  (opinion) Cleveland Plain Dealer  ...This year, as we celebrate its 41st anniversary, ERISA's pension protections are crumbling. A few weeks ago, the U.S. Treasury Department held a hearing in Washington, D.C., on finalizing a rule that opens the door to significant pension cuts including for current retirees. More than 100 retirees traveled to Washington, D.C., at their own expense to protest, and dozens spoke out against the rule at the hearing...
Union Continues Fight for CVS Pharmacists’ Breaks  Local 727  ...Teamsters Local 727 representatives continue to fight to ensure CVS pharmacist members are no longer denied their breaks and meal periods. Earlier this year, the union filed a grievance on behalf of all members for the company’s denial of uninterrupted breaks and meal periods. CVS management refused to work with the union to resolve the grievance, so Local 727’s legal department is taking the case to arbitration...
Strike, protests could happen for tech bus drivers, union warns  SF Gate  ...A union representing tech bus drivers warned members to prepare to strike if their employer, Compass Transportation, refuses to budge on giving them better health care benefits and more holidays. The drivers shuttle employees for large companies, including Apple, Genentech, Yahoo, eBay, PayPal and Evernote, and are represented by the Teamsters Union...
Teamsters Demand Reinstatement of Haitian Worker Unfairly Dismissed From Heineken Plant  Teamsters Canada  ...On September 1st, Wilson Celiné, an employee of Brasserie Nationale d’Haïti, showed up for work as usual, only to be handed a dismissal letter. Hired as a maintenance technician in 2006 by this subsidiary of multinational Heineken International, this engineer by profession and labour activist incurred the wrath of his employer by participating in a union activity and filing a complaint...

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE
Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal Is Reached  New York Times   ...The United States and 11 other Pacific Rim nations on Monday agreed to the largest regional trade accord in history, a potentially precedent-setting model for global commerce and worker standards that would tie together 40 percent of the world’s economy, from Canada and Chile to Japan and Australia. The Trans-Pacific Partnership still faces months of debate in Congress...
Officials Reach Deal On Trans-Pacific Partnership  Reuters   ...Pacific trade ministers have reached a deal on the most sweeping trade liberalization pact in a generation that will cut trade barriers and set common standards for 12 countries, an official familiar with the talks said on Monday. Leaders from a dozen Pacific Rim nations are poised to announce the pact later on Monday. The deal could reshape industries and influence everything from the price of cheese to the cost of cancer treatments...
Sanders blasts ‘disastrous’ Obama trade deal  The Hill  ...Sen. Bernie Sanders labeled a new trade deal finalized by the Obama administration on Monday as “disastrous,” and said he would work to defeat it. Sanders, the Vermont senator leading Hillary Clinton in polls of New Hampshire, said the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal will lead to the loss of U.S. jobs, adding he was “disappointed but not surprised” by the decision to complete it. “Wall Street and other big corporations have won again,” Sanders said...
TPP Would Include Auto Market Opening for Japan  New York Times  ...A U.S.-Japan agreement on autos trade as part of a sweeping Pacific Rim trade deal would have its own dispute settlement mechanism, including penalties, if Japan does not open its market enough to U.S. vehicles, a source close to the negotiations said on Friday. Negotiators are working to finalize a trade deal which would stretch from Japan to Peru and autos trade has been one of a few remaining and politically charged sticking points...
If There Really Is a Final TPP Deal: Can It Pass Congress? When Does Congress Get to See a Final Text?  Citizen.org  ...If there really is a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, its fate in Congress is highly uncertain given the narrow margin by which trade authority passed this summer, the concessions made to get a deal, and growing congressional and public concerns about the TPP’s threats to jobs, wages, safe food and affordable medicines and more...
Australia, US reach trade compromise  Business Review  ...The US and Australia are in agreement on an elaborate compromise within the Trans-Pacific Partnership to protect the intellectual property of complex drugs known as biologics, according to industry officials and an organisation following the talks. Under the bilateral deal, whose exact language is believed to be incomplete, countries in the trade bloc would have an alternative of either providing eight years of exclusivity to biologic drugs, or providing five years of so-called data exclusivity...
Three million people across Europe call for TTIP to be scrapped  Economic Voice  ...A Europe-wide petition calling for a halt to the trade deals being negotiated between the EU and the USA and Canada has reached three million signatures in the space of one year, days before it will be delivered to the European Commission in Brussels. Over 500,000 of the signatures that had been collected were from people resident in the UK. This morning 3,007,065 had signed the petition...
Anti-austerity protesters march in Manchester  The Guardian  ...Tens of thousands of people have joined an anti-austerity protest in Manchester on the opening day of the Conservative party conference, voicing opposition to policies including spending and benefit cuts, NHS reforms and restrictions on trade unions. Up to 60,000 people are said to have joined the demonstration, which was largely peaceful...
South Africa Coal Wage Strike Starts With No Dialog Planned  Bloomberg  ...The largest labor union at South Africa’s biggest coal producers said no meetings are planned with the companies after a wage strike started on Sunday night. “Our members have downed tools and supported our call for a strike,” Livhuwani Mammburu, a spokesman for the National Union of Mineworkers, which represents about 30,000 staff in the sector, said by phone on Monday. No meetings are scheduled with producers, including Anglo American Plc, Glencore Plc and Exxaro Resources Ltd., he said...

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES
Wisconsin’s Voter ID Law Back In Court For Discriminating Against Students And Veterans  Think Progress  ...Wisconsin once again has to defend its voter ID law in federal court, this time responding to a challenge to the law’s exclusion of veterans’ IDs, technical college IDs, and out-of-state drivers’ licenses. Staff attorney Sean Young with the American Civil Liberties Union will argue before the federal district court in Milwaukee on Monday, asking them to allow these alternative IDs to be added to the state’s strict list of acceptable documents...
Tough voter ID rules pull Kansas into multiple lawsuits  Salina Journal  ...Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s successful push to require new Kansas voters to document their U.S. citizenship has spawned three lawsuits, including one he pursued against a federal agency in trying to enforce the policy. Kansas is one of only four states that make new voters show a birth certificate, passport or other citizenship papers. The Kansas requirement took effect in 2013...

Right-to-work issue prompts push in Republican Party  Joplin Globe  ...In the wake of the right-to-work fight in Missouri this year, some conservative business leaders and organizations have launched a two-pronged push that, if successful, could bring changes to the state's work environment, its education and legal systems, and more. But some Republicans fear one part of that push could end up dividing the party...
Prevailing wage backers push for public vote on repeal  Detroit News  ...The best chance advocates have to save a Michigan law that promises better wages on public works projects is if Republican legislators ignore a petition initiative and instead let voters decide the fate of prevailing wage. The 50-year-old statute requires workers on state-financed government construction projects to be paid local wage and benefit rates, which are based on union contracts...
Koch Brothers Backing Misleading Anti-Solar Campaign in Florida  Truthout  ...The Koch brothers and utility giants are bankrolling a ballot initiative in Florida to block the development of home solar and to protect the utilities' continuing oligopoly on energy generation in the Sunshine State. Solar is booming in the U.S., with a thirty percent increase in generation in 2014, but surprisingly it's facing an uphill battle in Florida...
Brown proposes paid sick leave  Journal-News  ...Federal legislation introduced last month would mandate employers provide some form of sick days, to use to heal or to care for a sick family member. While some business professionals understand the need, they say it may not be practical. Congress is considering the Healthy Families Act, a bill that’s being pushed by 30 senators in the Senate, including Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio...
Lawsuit Against St. Louis Minimum Wage Hike In Court Tomorrow  CBS  ...It’s business versus the city in court tomorrow. St. Louis is 10 days away from a minimum wage increase to $8.25 per hour, and eventually up to $11 per hour in 2018. But Attorney Jane Dueker is representing a coalition of business groups against the minimum wage hike. Her side believes the city is not able to raise the minimum wage to higher than what the state requires...

U.S. LABOR
Bankruptcy Lawyers Strip Cash from Coal Miners’ Health Insurance  Pro Publica  ...As coal companies go bankrupt or shut down throughout Appalachia and parts of the Midwest, the immediate fallout includes lost jobs and devastated communities. But the Indiana case stands out as an example of how financial deals hatched far from coal country can also endanger the future safety net. At issue is health insurance promised to people who worked for the Squaw Creek Coal Company in Warrick County, Indiana...
UAW, Fiat officials miscalculated young worker angst  USA Today  ...UAW negotiators failed to understand the deep hostility of entry-level workers who, instead of taking a substantial raise, chose to join forces with higher-paid veterans to resoundingly defeat a proposed, four-year deal with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. Entry-level workers, referred to as Tier 2, have been stuck in a separate, lower pay range since 2007...
Frontier strikes deals with IBEW unions in California, Florida  Fierce Telecom  ...Frontier has reached union labor agreements with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) AFL-CIO in California and Florida, allowing it to move forward with its $10.5 billion acquisition of Verizon's wireline assets in California, Florida and Texas that's expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2016. The IBEW local unions in California and Florida said in separate statements that they support the deal...

These Guestworkers Just Won $20 Million Back From the Company That Trafficked Them  The Nation  ... They came from India to repair the Gulf Coast after hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and were repaid with months of abuse. On Katrina’s 10th anniversary, both the workers and their bosses are finally getting their due. Following a landmark lawsuit victory in February, the maritime company that imported the roughly 500 “guestworkers” to repair storm-damaged Gulf Coast oil facilities has officially apologized as part of a $20 million settlement...
Video Game Voice Actors Push for Strike Over Performance Bonuses and Stressful Recordings  In These Times  ...Voice actors are demanding they receive residual income based on sales, with a performance bonus for every 2 million online subscribers or copies sold. This set-up is designed to ensure smaller games are unaffected, as this is the threshold at which a game can be considered a "blockbuster," according to creen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), the union representing the actors...

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS
The irreversible damage of Volkswagen’s stunning deceit  Salon  ...Volkswagen’s ruse to circumvent U.S. auto emissions standards has left many wondering about the precise environmental impact of its cars, which emitted more pollutants than regulations allow. On September 18 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency discovered that four Volkswagen vehicles from model years 2009 to 2015 had been rigged with illegal software. They used a sophisticated algorithm that would make the cars run cleanly during emissions tests...
How Global Warming Makes Overcrowded Prisons Even More Dangerous  Mother Jones  ...There is no population more captive to the effects of global warming than the incarcerated. And given the huge concentration of black and Latino prisoners in America, this is a classic case of environmental injustice, as these consequences fall widely on prisoners of color. A new study from Daniel W. E. Holt of the Columbia Law School's Sabin Center for Climate Change Law explains over 144 pages what the climate-change toll truly is on the two-million-plus bodies caged in our prison system...
Doctors Without Borders Says U.S. May Have Committed War Crime  Slate  ...Doctors Without Borders said it was closing its hospital in the northern Afghan city of Kunduz on  Sunday, a day after it was hit by what seems to have been a U.S. airstrike. The medical charity, commonly known by its French name Médecins Sans Frontières, or MSF, increased the death toll in the bombing, saying the total fatalities amount to 22, including 12 staff members and 10 patients, and 37 people were wounded...
Britain Says No to Slavery Reparations, But Offers to Buy Jamaica New Prison  Common Dreams  ...British Prime Minister David Cameron stirred outrage this week when he rejected growing calls for slavery reparations and instead offered £25 million for a new prison that would allow his government to deport Jamaican nationals incarcerated in the UK to serve out their sentences on the Caribbean island...

Sign Up For Action Alerts

Mobile alerts from Teamsters. Periodic messages. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to 86466 to stop receiving messages. Text HELP to 86466 for more information.Terms & Conditions