Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News 10.09.15

TEAMSTERS
Teamsters Applaud Introduction of Pension Accountability Act By Sen. Portman  Teamster.org  ...The Teamsters Union applauds the efforts of Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) to pass legislation that would guarantee thousands of retirees and workers threatened by deep cuts to their pensions a meaningful voice in deciding their own future, without the threat of the Treasury Department nullifying their decision if it judges that the insolvency of the fund would be "systemically important" by causing a liability of more than $1 billion to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC)...
Tenatative Agreement Reached With Sysco Over Food Service Contract  Local 117  ...Teamsters Local 117 has achieved a fully-recommended tentative agreement with Sysco over a contract involving 220 drivers and warehouse workers employed at the company’s food service distribution center in Kent. The union and the company reached the agreement late Wednesday night at the Teamsters Union Hall in Tukwila...
Union pay increases slowly at U  Minnesota Daily  ...For the past six years, administrators, faculty and staff have had wages increase by more than 2 percent, while members of the Teamsters Local 320 have had their pay increase by about 1 percent, according to University data. Since 2014, administrators, faculty and civil service staff have seen a 2.33 percent average wage bump. If current negotiations between Teamsters and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3800, 3937 and 3801 stand the unions would experience an average pay increase of .875 percent...
Teamsters reach tentative agreement with SoCal chains  Supermarket News  ...The Teamsters Union said Wednesday it will recommend approval of new contracts with three Southern California chains. Voting is scheduled for Oct. 16 through Oct. 18, the union said. The contracts cover drivers and employees at the warehouses, dairies and manufacturing plants of Albertsons, Ralphs and Vons. Vons is now owned by Albertsons and Ralphs is a division of Kroger Co...

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE
After Years of Backroom Secrecy, Public Will Finally Get to See Full TPP Text  Common Dreams   ...After being shrouded in secrecy for years, the full contents of the 12-nation Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) will soon be brought into the sunlight. According to Kevin Collier at Daily Dot, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman has said the text will be made available to the public at large in approximately 30 days—on or around November 7...
TPP Treaty Full Text: WikiLeaks Releases Trans-Pacific Partnership Intellectual Property Rights Chapter  IBTimes  ...WikiLeaks claims it has obtained the final negotiated text of the Obama administration's Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal that covers intellectual property rights. It addresses internet services, medicines, publishers, civil liberties and biological patents. The agreement between 12 Pacific Rim countries has been called the biggest global trade deal in decades...
Japan's Amari says not willing to renegotiate TPP trade pact  Reuters  ...Japanese Economics Minister Akira Amari said on Friday he is not willing to renegotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) after U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said she opposed the free trade pact. Amari, speaking to reporters, urged U.S. lawmakers to back TPP and said going back on the deal now could hurt U.S. credibility...
Hillary Clinton's TPP deal disapproval is 'a critical turning point'  The Guardian  ...From the start, the Trans-Pacific trade pact that Barack Obama is trumpeting faced rough going on Capitol Hill, not least because some of Congress’s most powerful Republicans – among them the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell – were complaining about it. But the pact’s chances of winning ratification in Congress diminished on Wednesday when Hillary Clinton, the Democratic frontrunner, said: “Based on what I know so far, I can’t support this agreement”...
China’s Heft Gives It Ammunition Against the Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal  Wall Street Journal  ...On the surface, China appears a clear loser by its exclusion from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which aims to deepen economic ties and lower or eliminate tariffs in the 12-member bloc led by the U.S. and Japan. But company executives and economists say that despite China’s slowing growth, at least in the near term it is well armed against harm from TPP...
No End to Austerity for Serbian Seniors  Balkan Insight  ...Public debate on the issue has raged since last November, when the government imposed its cuts on the public sector ranging from 10 per cent off salaries to as much as 25 per cent off pensions. The measures sparked a national outcry, with education and pensioners’ trade unions being among the first to protest against the cutbacks. But a group of pensioners’ trade unions went a step further...
Tunisia Labor Movement Shares Nobel Peace Prize  Solidarity Center  ...For its role in brokering a peaceful path to democracy, Tunisia’s labor movement today was named a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. The Nobel Committee recognized the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet—comprised of longtime Solidarity Center ally the Tunisian General Labor Union (UGTT), the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts, the Tunisian Human Rights League and the Tunisian Order of Lawyers—for establishing “an alternative, peaceful political process"...
Breaking Ground: Mexico’s Miners Push for Worker Rights    Solidarity Center  ...Mine workers in Mexico labor in difficult and sometimes deadly working conditions. But through their union, the National Union of Mine, Metal, Steel and Similar Workers of the Mexican Republic (SNTMMSSRM, known as “Los Mineros”), they are winning collective bargaining pacts. The union is breaking ground by raising the visibility of the work and activism of women members...
 
STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES
New York's $15 minimum wage hike ignites national interest  CBS  ...New York's plan to give fast-food workers a $15 minimum wage is spurring similar efforts in states around the country - even as Gov. Andrew Cuomo's push to enact an across-the-board $15 wage faces vocal opposition at home. In a campaign modeled after the successful push by fast-food workers in New York, groups in 18 states are creating citizen "wage boards" to pressure elected officials to raise the minimum wage...
Hearing on Voter ID Will Take Place This Month  WFDD  ...State attorneys want a federal judge to dismiss a legal challenge to North Carolina’s voter-identification law before the presidential primary in March. It’s a controversial issue that’s been on hold while a related court case is being considered. When the voting rights trial happened this summer, voter ID wasn’t part of the case...
Struggling Phoenix Workers Demand $15 Minimum wage  New Times  ...Arizona workers shared their stories with a panel of government and business leaders Thursday at a community meeting about raising the minimum wage. Workers across the country have rallied under Fight for $15's banner since 2012 to raise the minimum wage. In response, several cities, including Seattle, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, have bumped pay to $15 an hour...
Jeb Bush Is Completely Wrong About the Voting Rights Act  The Nation  ...Bush says the VRA is no longer necessary, but his home state of Florida has been a hotbed of voter suppression since 2000.  It’s a fallacy to assert that the VRA was important in 1965 but no longer needed. In 2011, Bush’s home state of Florida passed a severe law shutting down voter-registration drives—which was later blocked in court—and cutting early-voting days, which led to seven-hour lines during the 2012 election...
The Fight for $15 Is Making Significant Progress on Wages. Now It’s Time for Step 2: Unions.  In These Times  ...It’s a safe bet that most working people would like a pay raise. They are also often reluctant to ask for one, let alone demand a doubling of their hourly rates. Low-wage Americans—the 42 percent of workers making less than $15 an hour—know all too well that they don’t just want more; they need more simply to survive at the lowliest version of the American standard of living. Increasingly, they are pressing their demands more forcefully, possibly inventing a new form of unionism as they persevere...

U.S. LABOR
33 Workers Dead After U.S. Cargo Ship Lost at Sea. Could It Have Been Prevented?  In These Times  ...Search and rescue teams officially gave up hope yesterday after a failed five-day effort to locate 33 cargo ship workers lost at sea in the waters near the Bahamas. The sailors and other shipboard workers are presumed dead in the wreck of the U.S.-flagged commercial vessel El Faro, which disappeared October 1 in the high winds and heavy seas of Hurricane Joaquin. The last voyage of the El Faro has already taken on the air of maritime mystery...
New UAW-FCA deal gives Tier 2 workers path to top pay  Detroit Free Press  ...Fiat Chrysler entry-level workers could reach a new wage of $29 an hour over eight years, putting them at par with senior colleagues and effectively eliminating the much-hated two-tier pay scale under a new proposed deal between the UAW and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. The proposal was reached just prior to the Wednesday night deadline of 11:59 p.m., averting a potential midnight strike by 40,000 unionized workers...
Union campaign targeting Boeing South Carolina moves online with NLRB ruling  Post and Courier  ...The International Association of Machinists is using a new method to recruit Boeing South Carolina workers, taking advantage of a recent ruling that lets labor unions collect electronic signatures on election authorization cards. The National Labor Relations Board rule went into effect Sept. 1. It allows workers to log onto a website and submit such cards via the Internet...
Are Bosses Necessary?  The Atlantic  ...A radical experiment at Zappos may herald the emergence of a new, more democratic kind of organization. The company abolished managers, eliminated job titles, denounced its own organizational hierarchy, and vested all authority in a 10,000-word constitution that spells out a radical new system of self-governance. Freed from direct supervision, employees are expected to join various impermanent democratic assemblies called “circles” (headed, but not run, by a “lead link”)...
Right-Wing Urban Outfitters Now Asking Employees to Work for Free  Alternet  ...Urban Outfitters has become known for three things: 1) Offending every possible marginalized group under the sun with apparel that features really tasteless messages; 2) allegedly stealing designs from up-and-coming artists and selling them as their own; and 3) having a president and CEO, Richard Hayne, who has given money to anti-gay marriage crusader Rick Santorum and other Republican politicians. Now the company is making news for its boldest action yet: asking employees to work for free!...
Jobless claims fall to near a 42-year low  Reuters  ...While businesses appear to have little reason to let workers go these days, in recent months they have not shown much gusto in adding new hires. U.S. employers added just 142,000 jobs to their payrolls in September and 136,000 in August, which was well below the averages in prior months of about 200,000 new jobs added every month. The slowdown in hiring has boosted expectations the Fed will wait until early next year to raise interest rates for the first time in a decade...

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS
Partisan Divide Widens Over Immigration Policy  NPR  ...It probably won't surprise you that there's a growing polarization among Americans over how to deal with several immigration policy proposals. Whether it's Donald Trump's idea for a massive border fence or the proposal to change the Constitution so that babies of unauthorized residents aren't automatically made citizens, Republicans and Democrats are hardening their views, according to a new national survey issued by the Washington, D.C.-based Pew Research Center...
Obama Won't Support Extending Deadline for Rail Safety Equipment  Bloomberg  ...President Barack Obama plans to enforce a deadline for rail operators to install safety technology by the end of the year, despite warnings from railroads including Union Pacific Corp. and Amtrak that they can’t meet the mandate and would have to suspend some service without an extension. Railroads have had seven years to install positive train control technology, which can slow or stop trains to avoid crashes...
Courts Are Striking Back Against The Criminalization Of Homelessness  Think Progress  ...For the third time in as many months, a federal court has struck down a city’s panhandling ban for violating the First Amendment’s free speech protections. The most recent case concerned an anti-panhandling ordinance in Grand Junction, Colorado, which outlawed “aggressive panhandling”...
Autopsy Shows Oklahoma Used Wrong Drug to Kill Man Who Said His Body Was 'On Fire'  Common Dreams  ...Oklahoma correctional officials in January used the wrong drug to execute Charles Warner, who said his body was "on fire" after the injection was administered, according to his autopsy report released Thursday. Oklahoma correctional officers received the same incorrect drug on September 30 ahead of the scheduled execution of Richard Glossip, who received a stay from Governor Mary Fallin after she was made aware of the erroneous delivery...