Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News 12.2.15

TEAMSTERS
San Bernardino County Public Employees Ratify Teamster Contract  Teamster.org  ...San Bernardino County employees, who are members of Teamsters Local 1932, ratified their first collective bargaining agreement yesterday. The agreement, ratified by over 80 percent of the votes cast, supported improvements in wages and benefits for the 11,000 workers who provide critical services to the residents of California’s largest county. “This is another big win for working families in Southern California,” said Randy Cammack, President of Teamsters Joint Council 42...
American Airlines Workers with Teamsters, CWA Ratify Groundbreaking Agreement  Teamster.org  ...Passenger service workers with American Airlines, who are members of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) and Communications Workers of America (CWA) Association, have voted to ratify a groundbreaking five-year agreement.The contract covering nearly 15,000 workers provides for initial average wage increases of 30 percent and improved benefits, among a number of other industry-leading gains...
American Air reservations agents approve contract with pay raises  USA Today  ...American Airlines reservations agents have voted to ratify a 5-year contract that gives pay raises to about 14,500 airline employees. The Communications Workers of America and the Teamsters said Monday that about 9,500 workers voted, with 73% voting to ratify the contract. According to the unions, workers will get immediate raises averaging 30%, putting them above pay levels for comparable workers at Delta Air Lines...
First Transit Agrees to Meet Again After Paratransit Drivers Unanimously Reject Contract Offer  Local 727  ...First Transit management has agreed to meet again with the Teamsters Local 727 Bargaining Committee after drivers at the DuPage paratransit facility unanimously rejected the company’s unreasonable last, best and final contract offer on Nov. 24. The offer included meager wages and benefits far below the industry standards. “Over and over, we told the company that this offer was unacceptable and that they needed to do better, but they refused to listen,” said John Coli Jr., President of Local 727...
Coca-Cola Teamsters Demand Respect as Final Day of New Contract Negotiations Begins  Local 727  ...The Teamsters Local 727 Bargaining Committee and Coca-Cola Refreshments met for more than 14 hours on Nov. 30 to try to come to terms on a new contract. After bargaining late into the night and early morning hours, both sides have returned to the table on Tuesday, Dec. 1 for what is expected to be another marathon session of negotiations. Coca-Cola Teamsters overwhelmingly voted on Sunday to authorize an unfair labor practice strike...
Teamsters oppose longer tractor-trailers on roadways  Tire Business  ...The U.S. Senate on Nov. 18 removed language from a spending bill that would force states to allow an increase in the length of tractor trailers. Previously, the Senate had instructed the chamber’s negotiators on the long-term highway bill to oppose any federal mandate that would require states to accept twin 33-foot trailers on their roadways, according to the Teamsters, which noted that the trailers are currently outlawed in 39 states — with UPS and Fed Ex among companies pushing the policy change...

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE
In South Korea, a Dictator’s Daughter Cracks Down on Labor  The Nation  ...Following in the footsteps of her dictator father, South Korea’s President, Park Geun-hye, is cracking down on labor and citizens groups opposed to the increasingly authoritarian policies of her ruling “New Frontier” party known as Saenuri. The situation could reach a critical point this weekend, when tens of thousands of workers organized by the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) join forces with farmers, students, and other civic organizations...
At Paris climate summit, environmentalists lobby against Trans-Pacific trade deal  Washington Post  ...Environmental activists are traveling to Paris this week, using the global climate conference as a platform to oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the trade deal they say undermines the summit’s goals. Representatives and lobbyists for the Sierra Club, Friends of the Earth and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade plan to meet with delegates and host strategy sessions and other public events at the Paris conference to voice their opposition to the trade deal...
On World AIDS Day, Here Are 12 Reasons TPP Is Bad for People with AIDS  AFLCIO  ...December 1 is World AIDS Day, a day described as "an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died." The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a complex trade deal that we're still trying to figure out all the ramifications of. Here are 12 ways TPP could be bad for people with AIDS...
The TPP State of Play: How We Defeat the Largest Trade Deal in History  EFF  ...The official release of the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on November 5 not only confirmed our fears about how it would threaten our rights online and over our digital devices, but also kicked off a 90-day countdown to President Obama signing the deal. A few days later, the White House formally requested the International Trade Commission (ITC) to begin its study of the impacts of the TPP on the U.S. economy...
Vancouver city council considering officially opposing TPP deal  Globe and Mail  ...Vancouver city councilors, concerned about whether the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact will put the city at risk from lawsuits by global corporations, say they’ll decide next month whether to become the first Canadian city to officially oppose the deal. Councillors asked city staff on Tuesday to examine concerns that the TPP’s investor-state dispute settlement provision – also known as ISDS – will compromise the city’s authority...
Greece Media Workers Go on Anti-Austerity Strike – Trade Unions  Sputnik News  ...Greek journalists protest on Wednesday against austerity measures adopted by Athens, several trade unions announced in a joint statement. "Media workers, together with all the working people of the country, call for retaining social security (basic and supplementary pensions), social benefits, health care," the unions stated...

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES
New public-sector ‘right-to-work’ measure filed in Oregon  NW Labor Press  ...On Nov. 20, anti-union attorney Jill Gibson turned in the first batch of 1,432 signatures on a new Oregon ballot measure, aimed at November 2016, that would eliminate any requirement for public employees to pay union dues or “fair share” fees to cover the costs of union representation. Gibson submitted four other versions of the same measure in March, but withdrew them in April and October after she determined that the measures would do poorly among voters...
State Gives Back Government Money To Study Paid Leave, Says Leave Isn’t About Caregiving  Think Progress  ...In September, the federal Department of Labor announced that it had awarded $1.55 million in grant money to help states and cities research the need and design for potential paid family leave programs. Tennessee was one of the five lucky states to win money. But just two months later, the commission abruptly announced it was giving back the money it had itself applied for...
ALEC Invites Politicians to "Plan Your 2016 Agenda" at ALEC Confab in Scottsdale  Truthout  ...ALEC's Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development Task Force has been the source of a slew of anti-worker bills including attacks on organized labor, attacks on higher wages, and efforts to limit benefits for workers. In Arizona, legislators will get an update on the success of these efforts to crush the only representative of working families in the workplace entitled: "From Right-to-Work to Paycheck Protection, An Update on State Labor Issues"...
Fight against Voter ID law continues  Daily Tarheel  ...To chants of “Sí, se puede,” people of different ages, races and genders held posters with phrases like “Vote Your Dreams, Not Your Fears” at an N.C. NAACP press conference Tuesday. The news conference marked exactly 60 years since Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus. The conference announced the new “It’s Our Time, It’s Our Vote” campaign, with one of its goals to push voter registration for 80 days until registration cutoff for the spring primary elections...
Judge dismisses attempt to raise state minimum wage  Daily Cardinal  ...A Dane County judge dismissed Tuesday a 2014 lawsuit against Gov. Scott Walker’s administration that attempted to raise the state’s minimum wage. The lawsuit, brought by liberal labor group Wisconsin Jobs Now, alleged the state was “failing to secure reasonable comfort, reasonable physical well-being, decency, and moral well being,” according to the original petition...
Scott Walker Boots 15,000 People Off Food Stamps In Three Months  Think Progress  ...In just three months, 15,000 people in Wisconsin have already lost food stamps thanks to Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) decision to enforce full work requirements for the program in Milwaukee despite economic conditions dire enough to trigger a federal reprieve. Walker’s administration made the policy change in April. The 15,000 bumped from the rolls from May to July is only half the number the state predicts will ultimately lose food stamps...
Ohio House Republicans to proceed carefully on 'right-to-work' bill  Cleveland  ...Ohio House Republicans say they expect a lengthy discussion on a so-called "right-to-work" bill, though they hesitate to say whether they will ultimately pass it. A number of Republican leaders say they personally support House Bill 377, which would prohibit private-sector labor union membership as a condition of employment...
Submitting to Wall Street Vultures, Puerto Rico Narrowly Avoids Massive Default  Common Dreams  ...Debt-choked Puerto Rico on Tuesday "narrowly avoided" economic default by scrounging together an 11th-hour payment toward its $354 million debt to Wall Street vulture funds, an unexpected move likely resulting from the island's submission to austerity cuts and other drastic government measures. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), speaking after a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday morning with Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla, said the commonwealth had "narrowly avoided a complete default"...
California Cities Build Momentum on Minimum Wage Boosts  KQED  ...In the last three years, 15 of the 30 cities and counties nationwide that have voted to increase the minimum wage have been in California, according to the UC Berkeley Labor Center. “California is a state that has made it very clear to cities and counties that they have the authority to pass a higher minimum wage,” said Laura Huizar, staff attorney for the National Employment Law Project...
Walmart Threatens City Council For Considering Minimum Wage Increase  Think Progress  ...A California city is experiencing a tactic Walmart has become known for: threats over a minimum wage hike. The city of Desert Hot Springs, California is considering a minimum wage increase to boost residents’ incomes and therefore help attract more retailers. But the proposal has drawn the protests of the country’s largest retailer, Walmart...

U.S. LABOR
UAW circulates 'scab' list in Kohler strike  Sheboygan Press  ...United Auto Workers Local 833 leaders have begun circulating a list of union members who have crossed picket lines in the now 2-week-old Kohler Co. strike, though they insist the individuals will be left alone. The list, which was obtained by the Sheboygan Press and verified by UAW Local 833 leaders, includes 13 circled names with the heading, “No longer our union brothers or sisters.” It goes on to state, “A scab is a scab”...
NLRB could impound VW ballots after Chattanooga union vote  Times Free Press  ...The National Labor Relations Board could impound ballots cast Thursday and Friday after the union election at Volkswagen's Chattanooga plant pending a review of an appeal by the automaker. Jessica Kahanek, an NLRB spokeswoman, said Tuesday she couldn't say for sure that will be the case after the VW election in which 164 maintenance workers will vote on whether they want the United Auto Workers to represent them for collective bargaining purposes...
Cool Job: For IBEW official, Circle of Lights is a labor of love  IndyStar  ...Around Thanksgiving, many Central Indiana families look forward to another beloved local holiday tradition when the Circle of Lights, presented by the Contractors of Quality Connection and Electrical Workers of IBEW No. 481, illuminates Monument Circle. Steve Menser, the business manager/financial secretary of the union local, has assisted with installing the Circle of Lights decorations for the past 26 years...
Dead, White, and Blue: The Great Die-Off of America's Blue Collar Whites  Alternet  ...While the lifespan of affluent whites continues to lengthen, the lifespan of poor whites has been shrinking. As a result, in just the last four years, the gap between poor white men and wealthier ones has widened by up to four years. The New York Times summed up the Deaton and Case study with this headline: “Income Gap, Meet the Longevity Gap”...

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS
Congress reaches deal on 5-year highway bill  Politico  ...Lawmakers are on track to clear a massive transportation infrastructure bill as soon as this week, a legislative coup a decade in the making that will give new House Speaker Paul Ryan something to crow about. Negotiators from both chambers of Congress tasked with hashing out a final deal are set to announce an agreement Tuesday afternoon after a majority of conferees signed off on the package...
Supreme Court timetable gives President Obama an opening on immigration  USA Today  ...The Supreme Court moved President Obama a step closer Tuesday to getting a final verdict before leaving office on his plan to protect more than 4 million undocumented immigrants from threatened deportation. The justices turned down Texas' request for an additional month to respond to the Justice Department's request for a high court hearing, leaving open the chance for a spring showdown over the controversial executive action...
The Deadliest County for Police Killings in America  The Atlantic  ...While attempting to track every police killing in the United States during 2015, journalists at The Guardian discovered that cops in Kern County aren’t just the deadliest force in the state relative to the population, they are the deadliest in the nation. “In all, 13 people have been killed so far this year by law enforcement officers in Kern County, which has a population of just under 875,000”...
Police Officer Who Killed Tamir Rice Says He Shouted Warnings Before Shooting  Slate  ...The police officer who shot 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland just over a year ago said he “continuously” shouted “show me your hands” in the moments before he decided to fire at Rice. Security footage of the park where Rice was shot on Nov. 22, 2014, showed that Officer Timothy Loehmann opened fire about 1.7 seconds after jumping out of the police cruise...

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