Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News For February 5, 2016

TEAMSTERS

US Foods Forces Phoenix Teamsters to Launch Unfair Labor Practice Strike  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters Local 104 members with US Foods took up unfair labor practice pickets today, charging the nation’s second-largest foodservice provider with bargaining in bad faith and discriminating against its union workforce as they attempt to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement...

Some U.S. Foods workers vote to strike, now picketing company in Arizona  AZ Family  ...A strike is underway by members of the Teamsters Local 104 at U.S. Foods in Phoenix and other locations across the state. Dozens of workers walked the picket line Thursday night outside the warehouse they normally work in. Josh Graves, a Teamsters representative, said the strike vote came after months of failed negotiations and four months of working without a contract...

Teamsters to Panthers Fans: MillerCoors Wants Carolina to Lose  Teamster.org  ...In a public information campaign launched this week, Teamsters are alerting Carolina Panthers fans that MillerCoors has turned its back on North Carolina—by planning to shut down the profitable, award-winning brewery in Eden, N.C. “Shutting the Eden brewery will destroy more than 500 good jobs and devastate North Carolina families,” said Jim Hoffa, Teamsters General President... 

Hoffa: FAA Measure Tries to Ground Trucker Safety by Ending Breaks  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa in response to a provision included in new Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization legislation that would curb states’ ability to require mandatory meal and rest breaks for truck drivers. “The Teamsters raised the warning flag late last year when some in Congress tried to include language in a long-term transportation funding bill that would have overridden the decision of 22 states to require truckers to take meal and rest breaks"... 

Mayor de Blasio’s Carriage-Horse Plan Falters in City Council  New York Times  ...Mayor Bill de Blasio’s peculiar and controversial crusade to limit the Manhattan horse-carriage industry abruptly collapsed on Thursday, dealing a blow to his image at the expense of a political pursuit that many of his allies had hoped he would abandon long ago. The collapse of the legislation came after the Teamsters union pulled its support on Thursday, saying its carriage-driver members believed the future of their industry would be endangered...

New Jersey Transit unions continue to negotiate as strike date looms  BLE-T.org  ...Talks between the 11 unions in the NJT Rail Labor Coalition and negotiators from New Jersey Transit continued today, but no agreement was reached. Both sides pledged to continue negotiating. Today’s talks were the first since Presidential Emergency Board 249 selected the unions’ final offer as the “most reasonable”...

Local 710 Overturns Termination at UPS Grievance Panel  Local710  ...A team of Teamsters Local 710 representatives and stewards fought hard to successfully return longtime UPS member Jerry Jordan to work recently after he was unfairly discharged. Jordan’s case was heard before the UPS grievance panel on January 7, with a final ruling in the union’s favor. The Local 710 team worked throughout the entire grievance process for the UPS Feeder Driver, who’s driven for the company for 13 years...

Teamsters plan lawsuit related to right-to-work study  Herald-Dispatch  ...The Teamsters Union said Wednesday that it will file a lawsuit against West Virginia University alleging violations of the Freedom of Information Act statute. Teamsters are requesting the release of emails and other information concerning a study assessing the economic impact of right to work in West Virginia, according to a press release. The WV Workplace Freedom Act, SB 1, commonly referred to as the "right to work" bill, passed the West Virginia Senate last month...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

Tube maintenance workers call series of strikes in safety dispute  The Guardian  ...Maintenance workers on London Underground are to stage a series of 12- and 24-hour strikes in a dispute over safety. Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will walk out next Friday from 6.30am for 24 hours, followed by further stoppages until June. Passengers are facing more disruption to services this weekend, when RMT staff are due to strike for 48 hours from Saturday evening...

Algeria: Human and Trade Union Rights Activists Under Pressure  Equal Times  ...It has been five years since the state of emergency was lifted, yet Algeria is still a long way from establishing a democracy built on respect for individual and collective rights, especially when it comes to the rights and freedoms of workers and trade unions. Workers affiliated to independent trade unions, in other words those not controlled by the regime, face unfair dismissals, intimidation and even imprisonment...

2 Cancer Patients Arrested Protesting Drug Provisions in TPP  Democracy Now  ...Protests against the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal continue after the 12-nation pact was signed Thursday in New Zealand. In Washington, D.C., two cancer patients were arrested after linking arms and refusing to leave the lobby of the building that houses PhRMA, the trade association that has pressed for expanded monopolies in the TPP...

Portman to oppose trade deal as opposition back home builds  Washington Post  ...Sen. Rob Portman, a former U.S trade ambassador, announced Thursday that he opposes a sweeping 12-nation Pacific Rim trade agreement, dealing a setback to a deal that is seen as a key part of President Obama’s economic legacy. The Ohio Republican is facing a difficult re-election campaign against Ted Strickland, an anti-trade former Democratic governor...

Hillary would touch up TPP  Politico  ...With the timing of Trans-Pacific Partnership approval still up in the air, presidential candidates have gotten plenty of chances to talk about how they’d approach the deal if it doesn’t get the OK while President Barack Obama is in office. And for the first time last night, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton indicated that she wants to tweak the deal...

One Million Anti-TPP Petitions Delivered to Congress  NH Labor News  ...As representatives of the TPP countries meet in New Zealand to officially sign the trade deal, its prospects of going into effect remain uncertain at best. The pact does not enjoy majority support in Congress, and changes that some members are demanding are strongly opposed by other TPP nations. No U.S. presidential candidate polling over five percent in any state supports the deal...

TPP threatens to worsen inequality  (opinion) Hill Times  ...For all the hype surrounding the TPP, the economic impacts that result from lower tariffs on trade will be modest. More important are the non-trade provisions, such as intellectual property and investment. And it is here that the TPP threatens to widen the gulf between different economic classes...

German judges slap TTIP down  DW.com  ...The German Magistrates Association (DRB) has delivered a slap in the face to the European Union, by coming out against one of the key planks of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) - the special courts allowing investors and corporations to sue national governments if their policies happen to threaten their profits...

Greece: Anti-austerity march brings violence to Athens streets  The National  ...Scuffles broke out and police used tear gas during a mass rally in Athens yesterday as Greeks railed against government pension reforms demanded by international creditors. Demanding an end to austerity, about 50,000 Greeks marched peacefully on parliament in central Athens chanting for the government to ditch the proposals, which many see as a betrayal of the leftist values of the Syriza party...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

West Virginia House passes right-to-work bill, after harsh debate  Washington Post  ...The West Virginia State House narrowly passed a right-to-work bill on Thursday, setting the state up to become the country’s 26th that doesn’t require employees to pay dues to their unions — a measure that has hobbled organized labor elsewhere. The bill had been fast-tracked through the legislature’s two-month session, passing through committee hearings...

West Virginia lawmakers OK bill to eliminate prevailing wage  WSAZ  ...Amid union opposition, the Republican-led Legislature has voted to repeal West Virginia's prevailing wage for public construction projects. The Senate's 18-16 party-line vote Thursday sends the bill to Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin for a likely veto. The House previously passed it 55-44...

NY Assembly passes paid family leave bill  Legislative Gazette  ...The Assembly passed a paid family leave bill Tuesday for the fifth time in as many years. Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie was joined by dozens of legislators, activists, and families in the Democrats’ conference room to announce their intention to pass it again. Bill S.3004-a/A.3870-a, is being sponsored by Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan, and Sen. Joseph Addabbo Jr., both Queens Democrats...

Christie Signs Bill Privatizing New Jersey's Water Supply  The Contributor  ...New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law on Thursday legislation that critics say sells out the state's water supply and democratic process for private profits. The Water Infrastructure Protection Act, which purportedly aims to address aging infrastructure , allows for fast-tracking of sales of municipal water systems to private entities...

How One Federal Official Just Made It Easier for States to Restrict Ballot Access  Think Progress  ...The leader of the federal agency that oversees elections has sided with Republican officials in Kansas, Georgia, and Alabama who have attempted to restrict ballot access by requesting proof of citizenship upon registering to vote. Brian Newby, who directs the Election Assistance Commission, penned a letter to officials on Friday announcing new guidelines to instruct voters in these states to provide a proof of citizenship...

Critics say anti-strike legislation 'attacks the messenger,' makes it easier to decertify teachers  MLive  ...Teacher's union officials slammed legislation Tuesday that aims to strengthen Michigan's anti-strike laws and gives the state superintendent the power to suspend or revoke the certification of teachers who participate in strikes. They criticized the legislation, which comes in response to rolling sick-outs that closed numerous Detroit public schools buildings in recent weeks...

N.H. inequality fastest growing in U.S.  Yale News  ...Income inequality since the 2007 recession has grown faster in the city of New Haven than in any other American city, according to a Jan. 14 study. The study analyzed income inequality in both major cities and surrounding metropolitan areas. While New Haven topped the list for the rate at which inequality is widening, it placed sixth on the list of cities with the largest disparity between the top 5 and bottom 20 percent... 

 

U.S. LABOR

Union files to represent Uber drivers serving LaGuardia  Politico  ...A union has formally requested to represent 600 Uber drivers who make pickups at LaGuardia Airport. The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 1430, on Tuesday filed a petition affirming that over 30 percent of that group desires to be represented by the union, and requesting the National Labor Relations Board hold an election...

Union workers begin strike at Springfield manufacturer  KSPR  ...Members of the Steelworkers Union went on strike at Polar Tank Trailer. In a news release, the company reports the union notified Polar Tank Trailer of its intent to strike earlier this week. Workers on the picket line say they're striking over what they call unfair labor practices and a hostile working environment. The company says it began negotiations with the union in September, and workers stayed on the job after the old contract expired in October... 

UAW 1714 reaches tentative agreement with GM on local issues  WFMJ  ...A tentative agreement on local contract issues has been reached between General Motors and the employees who stamp out parts for the Chevy Cruze in Lordstown. Leaders of UAW Local 1714 announced on Friday that the tentative pact was reached after what the union describes as difficult negotiations that included marathon nights at the bargaining table...

Unemployment Rate Falls Below 5 Percent For First Time Since 2008  Think Progress  ...The economy added 151,000 jobs in January while the unemployment rate dipped slightly to 4.9 percent, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Analysts had expected 190,000 jobs to be added. That’s the first time the unemployment rate has been below 5 percent since 2008.

December’s jobs report, which originally showed an addition of 292,000 jobs, was revised down to 262,000...

Thousands Rally for Chicago Teachers as Banks vs. Schools Battle Rages  Common Dreams  ...Thousands gathered in Chicago on Thursday to support the city's teachers union and rally against the massive budget cuts proposed earlier this week by the Chicago Public Schools (CPS). Protesters marched through the Loop in downtown Chicago and staged a sit-in at the Bank of America local headquarters, where 16 were arrested. A day before the protests, the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) pulled $726,000 from its account there, transferring it to Amalgamated Bank...

Could a New NLRB Case Limit Bosses’ Best Anti-Union Tool, the Captive Audience Meeting?  In These Times  ...The captive audience meeting, “management’s most important weapon” in an anti-union campaign, is finally being challenged in a petition to the National Labor Relations Board that could help re-balance the scales in union representation elections. Held in all-staff, small-group or one-on-one formats, employers use these mandatory meetings to confuse and intimidate employees into voting against union representation...

America runs on undocumented labor: Why the Boston Globe scandal deserves its own front-page story  Salon  ...The Globe’s workers remained invisible to much of the public until December 28th when the paper replaced its long-time delivery contractor with Long Beach-based ACI Media Group.  Droves of workers were laid off from the previous company when it lost its Globe contract, and ACI promised to cut costs for delivery by paying its newly hired workers less and making them work more under significantly worse conditions...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

New Report Debunks Key Conservative Argument For Corporate Tax Breaks  Think Progress  ...Barely 13 percent of all net job creation in any given state in any given year comes from out-of-state businesses either relocating from one state to another or expanding into new states, research from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities shows. Pure relocations such as the GE move “typically represent only 1 to 4 percent of total job creation each year"...

Corporate Interests Take Aim at Local Democracy  Truthout  ...Across America, corporate interests are taking aim at local government. With Congress gridlocked and a majority of state legislatures controlled by right-wing interests, cities have become laboratories of democracy for progressive policies like a higher minimum wage, LGBTQ protections, or parental leave. In response, corporate interests and groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) have increasingly been turning to state "preemption" measures...