Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News For March 24, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Hoffa: DOL Rule Change Sheds Light on Anti-Union Tactics  Huffington Post  ...It is clear to most people that corporations hold numerous advantages over everyday Americans when it comes to power in the workplace. But thankfully, the Obama administration just took a step to close a loophole that will shine a spotlight on those engaging in anti-union activities. The Labor Department just issued its final “persuader” rule language after nearly five years of consideration...

Teamsters Hail New Labor Dept. Rule Leveling Organizing Playing Field  Teamster.org  ...The Teamsters Union today is lauding long-sought changes implemented by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that will require management consultants and attorneys involved with creating anti-union propaganda for companies to disclose their efforts to dissuade workers from organizing and collectively bargaining...

Teamsters Applaud San Francisco Board of Supervisors for Upholding Labor Harmony  Teamster.org  ...The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has voted unanimously in favor of a resolution that calls on the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA)  to not grant a new permit to Bauer’s Intelligent Transportation after the company failed to abide by the SFMTA’s recently-passed labor harmony provision...

UNFI Drivers Win First Teamster Contract  Teamster.org  ...On Sunday, drivers who distribute natural and organic food products for United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) in Moreno Valley unanimously ratified their first Teamster contract. The contract includes job protections, overtime pay after eight and forty hours and a forty-hour weekly guarantee. “This just goes to show that when workers stick together and fight smart we can accomplish anything,” said Larry Cerda, one of the UNFI drivers who spearheaded the unionization effort... 

Protestors plan demonstrations at two California Chipotles  Food Safety News  ...Advocates plan protests for high noon Thursday at two Chipotle Mexican Grill restaurants in California to raise awareness about what they say are food safety problems at Taylor Farms, which supplies tomatoes to Chipotle, according to the Teamsters. “In the wake of numerous food poisoning outbreaks at the fast-casual Mexican food chain, safety advocates and workers say Taylor Farms’ operations in Tracy, CA, poses further risks to the safety of Chipotle customers”...

Easy call: Build the Hunts Point ramps  (opinion) Crain's  ...Daniel Kane is the president of Teamsters 202: The roads, bridges and railways connecting on-site businesses with their suppliers and customers are what make the system work. Incredibly, there is no highway connection into and out of the Hunts Point peninsula. Vans, box trucks and 18-wheelers make more than 20,000 trips per day with no direct pathway...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

Brazil's Summer of Discontent  Alternet  ...Brazil’s modernist plazas have been filled with protesters over the course of the past week. They have come to ask for the resignation of the President — Dilma Rousseff of the Workers’ Party (PT). An eruption of corruption scandals that implicate the entire political elite comes at a time of Brazil’s economic stagnation. Brazil currently suffers its worst recession in half a century...

South Africa: Mayor Beaten As Municipal Workers Vow to Continue Strike  AllAfrica   ...Workers affiliated to the South African Municipal Workers' Union (Samwu) in Willowmore embarked on a strike in January demanding better working conditions, the supply of protective clothing, and a salary increase before their municipality merges with Ikwezi (Jansenville) and Camdeboo (Graaff-Reinet) municipalities...

Menendez, Colleagues: TPP Action in Congress Should Not Come Until Malaysia, Others Improve Labor Standards  Public Now  ...U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) was joined today by 18 Democratic Senate colleagues, including Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev), in a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman expressing their concerns about unfulfilled labor reforms by participating nations as required by the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and requested that the Administration hold off on submitting implementing legislation to Congress until Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei meet their commitments...

Bipartisan members of Congress send letter to Obama, opposing TPP  TMN  ...Rep. Chris Collins (NY-27), Louise Slaughter (NY-25) and 17 bipartisan members of the New York Congressional delegation gathered Wednesday to oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Members of Congress sent a letter to President Obama in firm disagreement to the TPP as negotiated to make sure the trade agreement does not pass....

The TPP Is a Deal with a Dictator  (opinion) CTC  ...Human rights advocates gathered outside the World Affairs Council in protest on March 21, 2016, as the U.S. Ambassador to Brunei spoke at a Nike-sponsored event promoting the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade deal that includes Brunei, a country whose dictator recently decreed a law imposing death by stoning for LGBT individuals and women who commit adultery. “The Trans-Pacific Partnership fails to advance Oregon’s values in variety of ways"...

World watching as Canada casts aside austerity and gambles on a fiscal surge  CBC  ...Canada has abruptly switched sides in one of the perennial political and economic battles over how to restart a sagging economy. To put it in a way that would not please either side, it is the contest between the misers and the spendthrifts. After years of the penny-pinching approach, Canada has switched tack to become a big spender...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Voter Suppression Coming Back To Texas? State’s Halted Voter ID Law Gets Appeals Court Hearing in May  IBTimes  ...The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans scheduled a late May showdown for proponents and opponents of a Texas voter ID law, which the federal appellate court previously halted after finding it discriminatory to black and Latino voters in the state. Earlier this month, the court's 15 judges agreed to reconsider the constitutionality of the law...

Unions Push Right to Work off the Table in Kentucky  AFLCIO  ...nion-endorsed candidates won three of four special House elections this month, "right to work" is dead for now in the General Assembly, according to Kentucky State AFL-CIO President Bill Londrigan and Bill Finn, Kentucky State Building and Construction Trades Council director. State Senate President Robert Stivers (R) announced Friday that the Kentucky right to work act "is off the table this session"... 

The fight for $15 an hour minimum wage begins  OC Register  ...California restaurants, hotels and retailers are revving up to fight a ballot initiative that would raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next five years. The Fair Wage Act, sponsored by United HealthCare Workers West, a division of the Service Employees International Union, qualified this week for the November ballot...

D.C. mayor calls for raising minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020  Washington Post  ...D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser on Tuesday called for increasing the city’s minimum wage to $15 by 2020, dedicating her second citywide address to what she called a “bold” plan to make good on her motto to create “pathways to the middle class” for residents. The mayor also pledged to make “the largest investment in public education” in the city’s history...

Koch Brothers Attempt to Kill Single-Payer Health Care in Colorado  Truth-Out  ...Colorado's efforts to become the first state to pass a public, universal health care system are facing stiff opposition from right-wing organizations, many of which are funded by or affiliated with brothers Charles and David Koch. As expected, these moneyed interests are doing everything they can to stop the state from amending its constitution with a ballot referendum, Amendment 69...

 

U.S. LABOR

UAW Members Ratify Labor Agreement for Coshocton Works  PR Newswire  ...AK Steel (NYSE: AKS) said today that members of the United Auto Workers (UAW), Local 3462,  have ratified a new three and a half year labor agreement covering about 333 hourly production and maintenance employees at the company's Coshocton (OH) Works.  AK Steel said that UAW officials notified the company that the new contract was ratified...

It’s About To Get Harder For Companies To Hide Union-Busting  Huffington Post  ...A lot of U.S. companies pay top dollar just to keep labor unions out of their workplaces. It’s hard to know exactly how much — or who — they pay, because the reporting standards aren’t all that strict. But that’s about to change. On Wednesday, the Labor Department announced a final version of its contentious “persuader” rule. Persuaders are lawyers and consultants hired by companies to discourage workers from unionizing...

New Evidence That Women Make Less Than Their Male Coworkers With The Same Titles  Think Progress  ...Most people know American women, on average, make 79 percent of what men make. Some argue it’s because women choose lower paying fields. But a new analysis of crowdsourced salary data from Glassdoor finds that even when men and women of similar experience and educational backgrounds are working at the same company and have the same job title, women still make less...

Farmworkers’ Union on Protest Tour Hits Eureka, Asks Locals to Boycott  Driscoll’s Berries  Lost Coast Outpost  ...This afternoon, representatives of a farmworkers’ union stationed themselves outside Costco to deliver the message they’ve been delivering up and down the West Coast: Boycott Driscoll’s Berries! Boycott Haagen-Dazs berry ice cream! Two labor unions — one based in Washington, the other in Baja California — have united to press the berry giant to sign union contracts...

Cleveland Teachers Union, district return to negotiating table  Cleveland.com  ...Progress in contract negotiations dampened a planned protest by the Cleveland Teachers Union at Tuesday's school board meeting. At the urging of a federal mediator, the Cleveland school district returned to the negotiating table Tuesday morning – a month after breaking off negotiations for a one-year contract extension... 

Overnight Regulation: OSHA silica rule coming soon  The Hill  ...The Labor Department is preparing to issue controversial silica protections for workers. After years of delay, the Labor Department could finalize the silica rules as early as this week, after they were quietly approved by the White House's Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on Monday...

Tyson Loses as High Court Upholds $5.8 Million Worker Award  Bloomberg  ...The U.S. Supreme Court dashed business hopes for new limits on class-action lawsuits, upholding a $5.8 million wage award to workers at a Tyson Foods Inc. pork-processing plant in Iowa. In a 6-2 ruling, the court rejected Tyson’s arguments that it was subjected to an improper “trial by formula”...

How Garland Would (and Would Not) Be a Pro-Labor Justice  American Prospect  ...His nearly 20 years of jurisprudence on the D.C. Circuit Court shows him to be a prudent and restrained jurist who in labor-related cases largely defers to the National Labor Relations Board, typically benefitting unions and workers. However, given his preference for restraint, it’s unlikely that Garland would significantly counter the Court’s pro-business tilt...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

U.S. states giving more ex-felons voting rights back  Reuters  ...Some 800,000 Americans have regained the right to vote in the last two decades as about two dozen states have eased restrictions on felons casting ballots, according to the Sentencing Project, a prison reform advocacy group. The restoration of voting rights has drawn support from both Democrats and Republicans as a way to improve prisoners' reintegration into society...

US Elections Ranked Worst Among Western Democracies; Here's Why  Truth-Out  ...In practice, recent years have seen a long series of vulnerabilities in the conduct of American elections, as documented by the 2014 report of the bipartisan Presidential Commission on Election Administration. Indeed, these issues have been under close scrutiny ever since the notoriously flawed ballot design in Florida in 2000. Since then, the Commission has reported wait times in excess of six hours...

Flint Investigation Lays Blame For Water Crisis Squarely On The State  Think Progress  ...An investigatory panel tasked by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) laid the blame for the contamination of Flint’s drinking water with lead and other toxins on the state in a final report released Wednesday. “[T]he state is fundamentally accountable for what happened in Flint,” it states. “The Flint water crisis is a story of government failure, intransigence, unpreparedness, delay, inaction, and environmental injustice”...

North Carolina Makes Discrimination Mandatory with Most Anti-LGBT Law in the Nation  Common Dreams  ...In a shocking, unprecedented move, the North Carolina state legislature convened a special session late Wednesday in order to introduce and pass a sweeping anti-LGBT bill, HB-2, which overturns local ordinances protecting gay and transgender rights. Republican Governor Pat McCrory signed the bill into law later that night...

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