Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News For May 24, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Lockport School Bus Workers Choose Teamsters  Teamster.org  ...On Friday, school bus drivers and monitors at STA/Ridge Road Express who transport students for the Lockport City School District and Starpoint Central School District overcame tough opposition from management to join the Teamsters Union. The nearly 200 school bus workers voted decisively in favor of Teamsters Local 449 in Buffalo, N.Y...

Teamsters gather to support Clark County Sutphen workers  Springfield News-Sun  ...A handful of members from the Teamsters Local 284 gathered outside Supthen’s Springfield facility on West County Line Road Monday as workers from that facility decide whether they want to continue their affiliation with the union later this week. The Springfield location has slightly more than 30 workers and asked to be represented by the Teamsters about one year ago... 

Uber deal shows divide in labor's drive for role in 'gig economy'  Reuters  ...Last month, Uber agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by California and Massachusetts drivers for up to $100 million. Drivers would remain independent contractors under the deal, but Uber said it would help establish an association for them to communicate with the company. The next day the Teamsters, in conjunction with worker rights group Silicon Valley Rising, announced it would launch a driver association in California... 

California Teamsters to Oppose Cannabis Legalization in November  Leafy.com  ...Barry Broad, a representative from the California branch of the Teamsters union, tells BuzzFeed that the union was set to oppose legalization in the Golden State because of concerns around how cannabis would be transported and distributed. The Teamsters want it to be handled in much the same tightly regulated way as alcohol is now in California, he added...

Aiming to Pressure Con Ed, Subcontractor’s Workers Authorize Strike  Labor Press  ...After more than six months of trying to get their first union contract, workers at Allstate Power Vac in Brooklyn voted unanimously May 19 to authorize a strike. “It is unacceptable that workers are risking their lives and maintaining this essential infrastructure for near minimum-wage salaries,” Teamsters Local 813 President Sean Campbell said in a statement announcing the vote...

Teamsters To Host US Foods Strike Update Conference Call With Investors  PR Newswire   ...On Wednesday, May 25, Teamsters will host a conference call to discuss the immediate and long-term impact of recent strikes at US Foods' broadline distribution warehouses across the country and ongoing strikes in Baltimore. Workers at US Foods' Severn, Md. facility are now on their third week of picketing, which will extend to multiple Teamster-represented locations across the country...

Union Fights Against Dr. Pepper Snapple’s Wrongful Termination, Intimidation of Members  Local 727  ...Teamsters Local 727 representatives are fighting for five Dr. Pepper Snapple members’ jobs amid the company’s despicable attempts to intimidate and threaten both the employees and the union. The company recently wrongfully terminated five members for allegedly drinking alcohol on a far, unmarked corner of company property while off the clock...

Teamsters: Taylor Farms Must Be Accountable  Labor Press  ...The International Brotherhood of Teamsters has been protesting at Chipotle locations nationwide demanding that Chipotle hold its produce supplier Taylor Farms accountable for egregious health and labor violations. The protests are taking place at more than 12 locations across the U.S.Chipotles across the West have their tomatoes and peppers supplied by Taylor Farms, a California-based produce company... 

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

French fuel crisis: 1,600 gas stations running empty as workers strike, block supplies  RT  ...About 1,600 petrol stations across France are running out of fuel as employees go on strike and stage a petrol blockade across the country in response to recent changes to labor laws. French Transport Minister Alain Vidalies said on Monday that 800 petrol stations were out of fuel and a further 800 were running low...

Inside Mexico's 'ghost' unions  The Star  ...On paper, Mexican workers are beneficiaries of some of the continent’s strongest labour laws. In the gritty border city of Tijuana, most belong to a union. They just don’t know it. These are Mexico’s “ghost” unions, organizations that live in the shadows of Mexican industry. Their purpose, critics say, is not to fight for fair pay or enforce labour standards, but ensure they are ignored...

H&M says working to improve labor conditions in India, Cambodia factories  Business Insider  ...Swedish fashion retailer Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) said it was collaborating with trade unions, government as well as the U.N. to improve workers' conditions after a study found violations in supplying garment factories in India and Cambodia. The study by the Asia Floor Wage Alliance found problems such as low wages, fixed-term contracts, forced overtime and loss of job if pregnant...

Labor, environmental groups call on Congress to oppose TPP  The Hill  ...Labor unions and environmental groups are among the more than 1,500 organizations calling on Congress to reject a sweeping Pacific Rim trade deal. The groups, which include faith and advocacy organizations, argued in a letter sent to Capitol Hill on Monday that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would kill U.S. jobs, hurt the environment and endanger food safety...

Obama prods Vietnam on rights, promotes Trans-Pacific Partnership  WINA  ...U.S. President Barack Obama chided Vietnam on political freedoms on Tuesday after critics of the communist-run government were prevented from meeting him in Hanoi. He is expected to emphasise the benefits of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement between 12 Pacific Rim countries, which would remove tariffs within a 12-nation bloc worth a combined $28 trillion of gross domestic product...

Obama Visits Asia Pacific Nations Awaiting Action On TPP Trade Deal  NPR  ...President Obama heads to Japan and Vietnam, two nations waiting for the U.S. to act on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the long-stalled multilateral trade pact. One of the surprise issues of this election cycle has been trade, and the big multilateral trade deal that's supposed to be a symbol of bipartisan cooperation may be on hold because of that...

Greek austerity anger spreads to middle class  Salt Lake Tribune  ...Whereas previous protests against austerity cuts drew violent street demonstrations featuring hooded youths throwing firebombs, this time it's suited middle classes professionals revolting. Lawyers in particular are leading what's been dubbed the "necktie movement" with a strike that's closed courtrooms since mid-January. Effectively, no one in Greece can get a divorce, inherit property, sue for wrongful dismissal...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Calif. organized labor goes all in on flexible scheduling, worrying businesses  Business Journal  ...A California union federation group that represents 2.1 million workers says it is throwing all its energy into advancing legislation that would penalize employers for changing work schedules without giving at least seven days notice. The California Labor Federation is mobilizing its members to pressure legislators to pass the bill...

One Of The Most Aggressive Gerrymanders In The Country Just Lost In The Supreme Court  Think Progress  ...Nearly two years ago, a federal court struck down Virginia’s congressional maps, finding that state lawmakers engaged in an unconstitutional racial gerrymander when they packed tens of thousands of African-American voters into the already strongly Democratic district. On Monday, the Supreme Court dismissed an appeal brought by three Republican members of Congress who hoped to maintain the old maps...

Virginia GOP Is Trying to Keep Two Women—and 206,000 Like Them—From Voting in November   Mother Jones  ...Virginia Republicans have followed through on their threat to sue Gov. Terry McAuliffe over his April 22 decision to restore the voting rights of more than 200,000 felons, filing suit on Monday with the state's Supreme Court and alleging that the governor overstepped his authority...

Congress Rejects D.C.'s Declaration of Fiscal Independence  The Atlantic  ...In 2013, residents of the District of Columbia more or less filed for divorce from Congress. They voted by an overwhelming majority for a ballot measure giving the D.C. government control over its budget. Later this week, the Republican majority in the House plans to vote to repeal the local law that 83 percent of Washingtonians approved...

No, Paul Ryan, Austerity Will Not Fix the Starving Puerto Rican Economy  (opinion) The Nation  ...While Washington fiddles, Puerto Rico’s economy is crashing and burning. A debt crisis has, in the words of Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, “already harmed the health, safety and welfare of the 3.5 million Americans living in Puerto Rico.” Yet, instead of responding with an eye toward renewing and strengthening the economy of the commonwealth, Ryan and congressional Republicans keep coming up with convoluted schemes to punish Puerto Ricans...

 

U.S. LABOR

'This is for Our Families': Children of Striking Verizon Workers Join Picket Line  Common Dreams  ...From Indianapolis to Philadelphia, there were new, younger voices joining the usual chant on the Verizon strike picket lines on Saturday: "What do we want? A contract! When do we want it? Now!" Children of striking workers joined their parents for 25 nationwide "Family Day" protests organized by the Communications Workers of America (CWA), one of the unions behind the strike...

UAW wants union for Tesla factory  USA Today  ...The United Auto Workers remains interested in unionizing the Tesla Motors assembly plant in California, the union's president told reporters Thursday. The 5.3 million-square-foot Fremont, Calif. factory is the only U.S. assembly plant owned by an American automaker that is not represented by a union...

Inside Verizon’s Spring Break For Strike Breakers  BuzzFeed  ...The facility in Leesburg is proof of that investment and highlights the current corporate approach to battling organized labor: an all-inclusive spring break in the woods for mid-level management and picket-crossers to learn skills and hobnob (face-time with Senior Vice Presidents included), far removed from the front-lines of workplaces and the strikers themselves. It’s a strategy made possible by a 1930’s-era Supreme Court decision that allowed companies to permanently replace striking workers...

D.C. Circulator drivers reach wage parity deal  Washington Post  ...The company that operates the D.C. Circulator and the union that represents the workers have agreed to increase wages. Under a new three-year contract negotiated between First Transit and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1764, some of the Washington region’s lowest-paid public transit operators will transition to become some of the best-paid...

The holes in the overtime rule  Politico  ...The American workplace got a huge jolt when President Barack Obama released his new overtime rule, sharply expanding the number of people who qualify for overtime pay. But behind the headline was a strange fact about the U.S. job market that the rule largely left unchanged: A huge list of American jobs are specifically exempt from overtime. They include airline employees, truckers, and railroad workers, as well as farm laborers, home-based wreathmakers (really) and rural elevator operators...

Elizabeth Warren Takes On the ‘Gig Economy’  The Nation  ...Senator Elizabeth Warren waded into the debate with a lengthy policy speech at the annual New America conference in which she said it’s time to “rethink the basic bargain for workers who produce much of the value in this economy.” Warren’s essential point is that for all the talk about Uber, ride-sharing apps and their brethren are only part of a larger, destructive trend toward classifying workers as part-time... 

House GOP: Standing with wage thieves  (opinion) The Hill  ...While millions of Americans are struggling to get by, Republicans are trying to make it easier for employers to steal their wages. Last month during Committee consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act, Representative John Kline inserted an amendment to block the President’s Fair Pay Safe Workplaces Executive Order at the Department of Defense...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Advocates eye challenge to judge's order on Obama immigration relief recipients  Politico  ...Immigrant rights advocates are positioning themselves to challenge to a judge's order last week that could result in thousands of immigrants who applied for an Obama administration "deferred action" program having their personal information divulged to state authorities...

"Free Wildin": Teen Picked Up by ICE on His Way to High School Faces Deportation to Honduras  Democracy Now  ...Students at Riverside High School in Durham, North Carolina, are gathering on Capitol Hill today to demand the release of their undocumented classmate, 19-year-old Wildin Acosta. Acosta was detained by immigration agents in January while he was on his way to class...

Texas’ Largest Jail Accused Of Jailing Poor People Because They Don’t Have Money  Think Progress  ...The Harris County Jail is the largest in Texas and the third largest in the country. And most of the people inside, 77 percent, are there because they can’t afford to pay bail of $5,000 or less, according to the lawsuit. In a typical month, the jail will see about 8,600 people, 6,800 of whom are detained awaiting trial... 

Baltimore Officer Found Not Guilty on All Counts in Freddie Gray Case  Common Dreams  ...Baltimore Police Officer Edward Nero was found not guilty of all charges by a judge Monday morning for his role in the arrest and subsequent death of 25-year-old black man Freddie Gray. Nero, who is white, had faced charges of second-degree assault, reckless endangerment, and two counts of misconduct in office, all related to his role in Gray's initial detention and arrest on April 12, 2015...