Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News 10.08.15

TEAMSTERS
Teamsters Reach Tentative Agreement With Ralphs, Vons and Albertsons  Teamster.org  ...The Teamsters Union announced today that it has reached a tentative agreement with grocery companies Ralphs, Vons and Albertsons that if passed, will cover more than 8,000 members across Southern California. The drivers, warehouse, dairy and manufacturing workers at the three companies will vote on the tentative agreement from Oct. 16-18...
Union Challenges Unjust Treatment of Paratransit Workers  Local 727  ...In the last nine months alone, Teamsters Local 727 representatives have successfully fought for the reinstatement of a dozen paratransit workers who were wrongfully fired. The union also has filed about 75 grievances relating to issues with discipline, seniority, attendance and other contract violations committed by management at CDT, First Transit, MV Transportation and Ride Right locations...
An Uber Union?  American Prospect  ...If the National Labor Relations Act doesn’t cover independent contractors, could local governments still pass laws that would? It’s not without precedent: Some states have allowed farmworkers to join unions and O’Brien has been working with Teamsters Local 117 to find a concrete strategy for Seattle. While his bill focuses specifically on drivers, it may also set a precedent for workers' rights for other industries that rely on independent contract labor...
School board members: Teamsters negotiations need to be resolved soon  Courier & Press  ...At some point, there has to be an end. That's what Evansville Vanderburgh School Board Secretary Andy Guarino said about collective bargaining negotiations with Teamsters Local 215. Duckworth noted issues and concerns have been addressed on the other four employee group contracts but he said binding arbitration is preventing the two groups from an agreement. Teamsters Local 215 President Chuck Whobrey said that shouldn't be a sticking point...
Port Driver Heads to D.C.  Go By Truck News   ...A port truck driver who was fired over employee classification issues is taking the fight to the White House. Alex Paz served on a panel at a conference on workers’ rights yesterday, Oct. 7, 2015, in Washington, D.C.
Yesterday’s White House Summit on Worker Voice was the first event of its kind. It sought to “explore ways to ensure that middle class Americans are sharing in the benefits of the broad-based economic growth that they are helping to create”...
Joe Biden would be only Democratic candidate backing Asia trade deal if he runs for president  Star Tribune  ..."This is a game changer," Biden said earlier this year in Mexico, describing TPP as a "comprehensive, high-standard trade agreement" that would raise the bar for 21st century trade. Clinton and other Democrats are aggressively seeking union endorsements in the primary. Galen Munroe, a Teamsters spokesman, said opposition to TPP would be an important consideration...

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE
Hillary Clinton Just Made Passage of the TPP Much More Difficult  The Nation  ... In a Wednesday afternoon interview with PBS, Hillary Clinton announced that she is opposed to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal that was finalized just two days earlier. “As of today, I am not in favor of what I have learned about it,” she told Judy Woodruff. “I don’t believe it is going to meet the high bar I have set”...
Tobacco ‘carve-out’ sparks bid to sink TPP  The Hill   ...Lawmakers from tobacco-producing states and business groups are aiming to torpedo a sweeping Asia-Pacific deal over a provision they believe will severely damage the U.S. industry. Delegates from North Carolina, where the majority of the nation’s tobacco is grown, says language unveiled this week in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) unfairly targets the Tar Heel State’s prized crop...
China and Europe may team up to snub TPP  CNBC  ...The world's largest trade deal in recent decades may wind up creating high school-esque cliques on the international stage. As the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) celebrates after sealing an agreement five years in the making, analysts are wondering whether the key losers from the deal, China and Europe, could join forces in retaliation...
How the Trans-Pacific Partnership Threatens America's Recent Manufacturing Resurgence  The Atlantic  ...Now that the U.S. and 11 Pacific Rim nations have agreed on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, those who follow manufacturing are looking with new scrutiny at the deal, which will now come before Congress. There’s been a resurgence of manufacturing in the U.S. after all, a movement called “onshoring.” The nitty-gritty details of the TPP are still not public, but it’s known that the agreement seeks to gradually reduce trade barriers such as tariffs among member countries...
Why the TPP Won’t Work for Workers  The Nation  ...Those who want evidence of the impact TPP may have on a huge chunk of the world’s workforce can look no further than how an existing free trade accord, based on the same model, is managing labor relations between Peru, a TPP signatory, and the United States. The US-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement’s (PTPA) supposedly state-of-the-art labor grievance process is just starting to be tested in a landmark case...
TTIP: The Need For A New Trade Model Dedicated To Shared Prosperity  (opinion) Social Europe  ...Unions on both sides of the Atlantic are coming together to demand a new set of pro-worker objectives for the TTIP agreement. The AFL-CIO shares information, develops shared proposals and meets regularly with both partners’ negotiators to make clear that the status quo on trade is unacceptable. In 2014, the AFL-CIO and the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) published a joint statement urging the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiators to adopt an “open, democratic and participatory” process...
Anti-austerity protests turn violent in Belgium  The Independent  ...Up to 100,000 people took to the streets on Wednesday in the Belgian capital Brussels, in order to protest against the austerity policies of right-wing Prime Minister Charles Michel. In violent clashes, the police deployed a water cannon against protestors outside Brussels Nord train station. The demonstration was part of a national day of protest against austerity policies and was organised by the Belgium’s three main trade unions...
New VW boss warns staff of ‘massive cutbacks’ after emissions scandal  Al Jazeera  ...New Volkswagen Chief Executive Matthias Müller warned staffers on Tuesday to brace for "massive cutbacks" in response to the diesel emissions scandal that has hammered the company's stock and reputation. Speaking to employees at VW headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany, Müller, who replaced longtime CEO Martin Winterkorn late last month, said all the company's investment plans would be put under review and an existing cost-cutting program accelerated...

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES
Tennessee’s First Year Of Drug Testing Welfare Applicants Didn’t Go Very Well  Think Progress  ...Tennessee’s first year of drug testing welfare recipients uncovered drug use by less than 0.2 percent of all applicants for the state’s public assistance system. The state implemented the testing regime in the summer of 2014, adding three questions about narcotics use to the application form for aid. Anyone who answers “yes” to any of the three drug questions must take a urine test or have their application thrown away immediately...
Can California Prevent Wage Discrimination Against Women?  The Atlantic  ...Despite, or perhaps because of, overwhelming congressional gridlock that has stymied federal legislation, states are taking their own steps toward addressing the gender wage gap. On Tuesday evening, California Governor Jerry Brown signed the California Fair Pay Act, which is being called the “strongest” state law to tackle the issue...
State wants federal judge to rule on Voter ID before March primaries  Winston-Salem Journal  ...State attorneys want a federal judge to dismiss the legal challenge to North Carolina’s voter-identification law before the March 2016 presidential primary, according to court documents filed Wednesday. And though the plaintiffs, including the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP, said they hoped to settle the matter before a trial, state attorneys said there’s no chance of that...
Alabama Puts Up More Hurdles for Voters  (editorial) New York Times  ...Barely one year after Alabama’s voter-ID law went into effect, officials are planning to close 31 driver’s license offices across the state, including those in every county in which blacks make up more than 75 percent of registered voters. It's ostensibly a cost-cutting effort, but couples with the voter-ID law, these closings will make it even more difficult for many of the state's most vulnerable voters to get one of the most common forms of identification now required to cast a vote...
It’s Getting Harder To Move Beyond A Minimum-Wage Job  FiveThirtyEight  ...Minimum-wage jobs are meant to be the first rung on a career ladder, a chance for entry-level workers to prove themselves before earning a promotion or moving on to other, better-paying jobs. But a growing number of Americans are getting stuck on that first rung for years, if they ever move up at all...

U.S. LABOR
Obama praises unions, workers' rights at White House Summit  Reuters  ...President Barack Obama called for higher blue-collar wages and benefits and promoted collective bargaining on Wednesday, courting workers' unions in a day-long event as his advancing Pacific Rim trade deal has left many labor groups disenchanted with the White House. In a speech to workers, union leaders, lawmakers and employers, Obama supported the defense of workers' rights and urged workers to band together in an increasingly technology-driven economy...
UAW reaches tentative deal with Fiat Chrysler to avoid strike  Washington Post  ...The United Auto Workers union narrowly avoided a strike against Fiat Chrysler of America early Thursday morning, announcing an agreement less than two days after threatening to pull as many as 40,000 workers off the job while contract negotiations soured. The union posted on Facebook just after midnight that that bargaining committee had "secured significant gains"...
Ford Motor Company Dodges The Impending Workers’ Strike After Reaching An Agreement With The Union  Business Finance News  ...Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) has avoided a workers’ strike at Ford’s Kansas City assembly plant, which produces its most profitable F-150 pickups along with the transit full size commercial vans. Approximately 7,500 people work at the Missouri Ford plant. According to Bloomberg, both parties reached on a tentative labor contract on Friday...
Companies agree to first union deal for Pittsburgh security guards  Post-Gazette  ...Capping what supporters have called the biggest labor organizing victory in Pittsburgh in a decade, a group of security companies have agreed to the first-ever contract covering hundreds of security guards who patrol dozens of large commercial buildings in the city. The local chapter of the property services labor union, known as 32BJ SEIU, began organizing security guards last fall by the hundreds...
Wave of Digital Media Organizing Continues as Al Jazeera America Goes Union   In These Times  ...The unionization of digital media continues—now at Al Jazeera America (AJAM), after the National Labor Relations Board confirmed this morning that the news publication’s digital workers voted 32-5 in favor of union representation under the NewsGuild of New York, an affiliate of the Communications Workers of America (CWA). AJAM digital workers had previously sought voluntary union recognition from employers on September 3...
Trevor Noah dissects the Uber economy: “You get into it for the 19-year-old who vomits in the back seat of your Camry”  Salon  ...Uber’s app-based taxi service might be available in 311 different cities and be estimated as a $50 billion company, but “The Daily Show’s” Trevor Noah and Jordan Klepper say there’s something disturbing about the new “gig economy.” The model of paying people for a brief service means fewer workers are salaried employees...
Senators Want To Clean Up After Supreme Court Decision That Exposed Older Workers To Discrimination  Think Progress  ...On Thursday, Sens. Bob Casey (D-PA) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) will introduce the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (POWADA), a bill aimed at reversing a 2009 Supreme Court decision that made it much harder for workers to prove they have been victims of age discrimination, a Congressional staffer told ThinkProgress...
How Bernie Sanders’ New Bill Would Help More Workers Unionize  Think Porgress  ...Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) unveiled a new bill this week that would make it easier for workers to form a union and negotiate a contract free from employer retaliation or foot-dragging. As he actively courts union endorsements of his presidential candidacy, Sanders’ latest move also draws a strong contrast with his Republican opponents in the presidential race, who have almost unanimously backed “right-to-work” laws that would weaken labor unions...

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS
Not Just Consumer Fraud, VW Scandal Called 'Crime Against Climate'  Common Dreams  ...Joining the chorus of watchdogs who say Volkswagen (VW) must pay for its corporate crime, the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) on Tuesday released an analysis charging that financial penalties for the company's environmental violations should be no less than $25.1 billion in the United States alone. While VW Chief Executive Matthias Müller stressed on Wednesday that "there were no deaths, and our cars were, and are safe," the evidence suggests otherwise...
Clinton to Meet Friday with Black Lives Matter Activists  NBC  ...A Clinton campaign aide confirmed that the meeting will take place Friday in DC. McKesson and other activists have already met over the last few weeks with Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. They have been seeking meetings with all of the candidates of both parties to push their idea of police reforms that they have dubbed "Campaign Zero," the idea being to end police killings of civilians...