Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News For May 18, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Hoffa: Changes to Overtime Rule Will Help Working Families  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa on the U.S. Labor Department’s announcement of its final overtime rule that more than doubles the salary threshold for which nearly all workers must receive time-and-a-half pay up to $47,476 a year: “The Obama administration is right to move forward with this long overdue action that raises wages and improves the lives of working families"...

Pilots Flying For DHL Express, Amazon Vote To Strike  Teamster.org  ...As Deutsche Post DHL prepares for its annual shareholder meeting in Germany this week, American pilots who fly worldwide for the logistics company announced the results of a recent vote to authorize their union to call a strike if necessary. The pilots are represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and its airline affiliate, Teamsters Local 1224...

In strike vote, Teamster cargo pilots seek 'leverage' with DHL, airlines  JOC  ...Union pilots flying U.S. planes for DHL voted to authorize a strike Tuesday, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a strike is imminent. “By calling this strike vote, we are telling our respective companies — and DHL — that they need to listen to the pilots who keep them flying and help build their millions in profits,” Captain Mike Griffith, an Atlas Air pilot and member of Teamsters union Local 1224, said...

Ottawa Ready Mix Drivers On Strike  Teamster.org  ...Drivers and batchers who are members of Teamsters Local 91, working at Ready Mix/Essroc concrete have brought their fight for a better contract to the company's regional office in Ottawa. "Based on the company's position throughout negotiations, the workers in Pembroke are viewed as second class workers by the Ottawa office of Essroc," said Brian MacDonald, President of Local 91...

Teamsters, Activists Alert David's Bridal Customers About Company's Dire Straits  Teamster.org   ...David’s Bridal customers in the Steel City were greeted today by activists and Teamster members protesting the company’s troubled consumer record. Protesters highlighted concerns that the wedding giant’s worsening finances might impair its ability to deliver dresses and services to customers as promised...

Teamsters oppose beer mega-merger  NW Labor Press  ...David Laughton, head of the Brewery Workers’ Conference of the Teamsters Union, says Miller Coors didn’t even wait for the merger before anti-competitive practices began: Two days before merger talks were announced, Miller Coors announced plans to close its Eden, North Carolina, mega-brewery in September 2016, eliminating hundreds of union jobs...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

French Labor Protests: Tear Gas Used In Paris; Truckers Block Highways  NPR  ...Riot police in Paris used water cannons and tear gas to disperse protesters who had hurled rocks and other objects at officers. Truckers blocked roadways and railroad workers joined the strikes. French leaders say they have to make their country's economy more flexible, competitive and productive. Legislation that's moving forward would make it easier for employers to hire and fire workers...

Nigeria Workers Will Strike May 18 over Fuel Subsidies  Solidarity Center  ...Nigeria’s largest trade union federations will call a nationwide strike May 18 unless the Nigerian government returns fuel subsidies it removed on May 11. Meeting over the weekend, the executive councils of the Nigeria Labor Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), which together represent millions of workers, along with civil society organizations, decried the nearly 50 percent hike in fuel prices...

UK rail strike: Southern workers stage second 24-hour walkout  The Week  ...Thousands of commuters will face interrupted journeys today as Southern rail workers stage a 24-hour walkout that will affect some of the nation's busiest routes. Some 2,100 services are scheduled to operate, but hundreds of trains are expected to be cancelled as a result of the industrial action by the RMT union, part of a dispute over the role of conductors...

House Dems urge enforcement of Colombia trade deal  The Hill  ...Several House Democrats on Tuesday urged the Obama administration to take steps to protect workers rights in Colombia. Led by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (Conn.), the Democrats said that labor action plan in the Colombia trade deal, which was ratified by Congress in 2011, has fallen far short of expectations and needs to be enforced...

Anti-trade rhetoric not denting U.S. trade chief's hopes for TPP vote  Reuters  ...The top U.S. trade official is not losing hope for congressional approval of a sweeping pan-Pacific free trade agreement this year despite strong anti-trade rhetoric in the U.S. presidential campaign that may be influencing reluctant lawmakers. U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman told Reuters in an interview in Lima, Peru, that he continues to have "good meetings" with members of Congress...

Greek Government to Submit New Austerity Bill to Parliament  ABC  ...Greece's government is to submit its latest austerity measures bill to Parliament within the day, with lawmakers to vote on the package of tax hikes and reforms Sunday night. The move comes ahead of a meeting next week of eurozone finance ministers who will discuss Greece's progress in reforms required under its third bailout...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Workers may unionize — but not farmworkers. A lawsuit in New York seeks to change that.  PRI  ...After 15 years of grassroots organizing by farmworkers and labor advocates in New York, the right to collective bargaining may be on the horizon for the state's approximately 60,000 farmworkers. The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit last week against the state and the governor. The advocacy group says denying farmworkers these protections violates the state constitution...

Connecticut To Automatically Register 400,000 Voters  Think Progress  ...On Tuesday, Connecticut became the fifth state in the nation to approve a system where residents are automatically registered to vote every time they visit a Department of Motor Vehicles, following the lead of Oregon, California, West Virginia, and Vermont... 

Judge strikes blow to Kansas' voter ID requirements  CNN  ...Kansas cannot require voters to prove their citizenship when registering to vote, a federal judge ruled. U.S. District Judge Julie A. Robinson decided Tuesday that part of Kansas' voter ID law likely violates a provision in the 1993 National Voter Registration Act, which says states may only require voters provide the "minimum amount of information necessary" to assess whether or not someone is eligible to vote...

City prevailing wage laws ruled constitutional  Detroit Free Press  ...In a case involving a contractors' group and the City of Lansing, the Michigan Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that local prevailing wage laws — which require union-rate pay and benefits on city jobs — are constitutional. The Associated Builders and Contractors sued Lansing in 2012 in an attempt to overturn the city's prevailing wage ordinance as unconstitutional...

As oil boom goes bust, Oklahoma protects drillers and squeezes schools  Reuters  ...State lawmakers voted to keep in place some of the lowest taxes on oil and gas production in the United States - a break worth $470 million in fiscal year 2015 alone. The state’s schools haven’t been so fortunate. In Newcastle, 23 miles from the capital of Oklahoma City, John Cerny recently learned that the school attended by his five-year-old granddaughter, Adelynn, will open just four days a week next year...

Massachusetts Court Sides with Teenagers in 'Historic' Climate Victory  Common Dreams  ...Siding with four teenage plaintiffs and the environmental groups that backed them, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday ruled that the state has failed to fulfill its legal obligation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The unanimous decision from the state's highest court reverses a lower court ruling...

 

U.S. LABOR

Verizon, striking unions to continue talks, U.S. Labor Dept. says  Reuters  ...Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) and representatives from two striking unions will continue contract discussions in Washington this week with the help of the U.S. Department of Labor, the regulator said. The groups during these talks will not make any public statements, nor will there be comments from the federal officials involved, the Labor department said on Tuesday...

White House Increases Overtime Eligibility by Millions  NY Times  ...The Obama administration, in a far-reaching effort to improve the lot of workers that has ignited criticism from business groups, announced on Tuesday that it was making millions more employees eligible for overtime pay. Under the new regulation, most salaried workers earning up to $47,476 a year must receive time-and-a-half overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours during a week...

New Overtime Rules Are a Win for Working People  JwJ.org  ...After much anticipation and speculation, the Labor Department released an update today to the rules that govern who is protected by the overtime pay provisions in the Fair Labor Standards Act. This long overdue change will significantly increase the number of people who are able to earn a fair return on their work...  

Judge Tosses Lawsuit Challenging SEIU's Representation of Care Workers  BNA  ...The Service Employees International Union will continue to bargain with Illinois on behalf of 50,000 home health aides and child care workers after a federal judge in Chicago dismissed a lawsuit fueled by two right-to-work advocacy groups, which asserted the exclusive representation law governing such workers is unconstitutional...

CEO-worker pay gap stays wide despite wage hikes: unions  Reuters  ...Chief executive officers of S&P 500 companies on average made 335 times more money than U.S. rank-and-file workers last year, down from a multiple of 373 in 2014, according to a union study released on Tuesday. The figures are issued annually by the AFL-CIO...

Gov. Rauner vetoes bill that would send talks with union to arbitration  Journal Star  ...Once again, Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed a bill that would send unresolved labor talks with state workers to binding arbitration. Rauner vetoed the bill Monday, saying the legislation was an attempt to remove his office from labor talks and would set the stage for a contract with the state’s largest employee union that the state cannot afford...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Mississippi city ordered to desegregate schools 60 years after landmark ruling  The Guardian  ...Nearly 60 years after the landmark US supreme court ruling that ordered schools to integrate, the classrooms of Cleveland, Mississippi, are still divided by race. A federal court ordered the Cleveland school district to consolidate its schools entirely on Friday, ruling that after so many decades of resistance, only dismantling and reforming the schools could bring the town’s two sides together...

Immigrant Advocates Interrupt Top Obama Administration Official: ‘Stop The Raids’  Think Progress  ...About a dozen immigrant advocates disrupted Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson at a graduation ceremony over the weekend, following the Obama administration’s renewed calls for a large-scale immigration operation to deport some asylum-seeking Central American mothers and children...

How thousands of truck drivers are combatting human trafficking, one truck stop at a time.  UpWorthy  ...While the world is a dark place for the approximately 4.5 million people currently trapped in the human trafficking industry in forced sexual exploitation, this is also a story of redemption and heroes. Jacobs works as a trainer for Truckers Against Trafficking, or TAT, a nonprofit organization rallying America’s 3.4 million truck drivers to combat trafficking...

How Koch Industries is scamming America: Investigation highlights a global web of tax avoidance  Salon  ...A liberal Super PAC that researches and analyzes conservative political candidates and their funders has uncovered 610 companies they believe to be subsidiaries of Koch Industries, registered in 17 known global tax havens. The majority of the subsidiaries can be found in two of the worst tax havens on the planet: Bermuda and the Cayman Islands...

Donald Trump and the global acceleration of income inequality  (opinion) Salon  ...For decades, Donald Trump has used secrecy around his money, like how much he has and how much he is worth, to maintain absolute  control over his billionaire narrative. For Trump, as with so many of his ardent followers, great wealth in of itself, is evidence  of character  and innate superiority...

Confronting the Parasite Economy  (opinion) American Prospect  ...here are two types of businesses in America today: those that pay their workers a living wage—the real economy—and those that don’t—the parasite economy. And all of us who live and work in the real economy should be royally pissed at the way the parasite economy is sucking us dry... 

Really, Really Rich Trump Is No Workers’ Champion  (opinion) USW  ...Trump attended private schools and inherited $40 million when he was just 28 years old. He didn’t spend summers volunteering for Habitat for Humanity in Appalachia. He didn’t take a gap year to put that fancy private school education to use tutoring inner city kids. This guy who was born with a really, really silver spoon in his mouth doesn’t have a clue what living on $7.25 an hour means...