Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News For June 22, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Allegiant Air, Teamsters reach tentative contract agreement  Review Journal  ...Allegiant Air and the Teamsters, representing the airline’s pilots, have reached a tentative agreement on a contract, the first labor agreement ever reached by the Las Vegas-based company. Dan Wells, president of Teamsters Local 1224, said the contract represents a victory for pilots with significant pay raises, improved scheduling procedures, pilot participation in a company profit-sharing plan, improvements in medical coverage benefits and a better 401(k) retirement program...

Uber, Lyft drivers push to unionize  SF Chronicle  ...In five years as a union organizer, Misty Tanner has approached employees of San Bernardino and Butte counties, and school bus drivers and custodians in Clark County, Nev. But now she’s facing a unique challenge: signing up Bay Area Uber and Lyft drivers for representation by the Teamsters. “We’re the backbone of Uber’s business; we should have some say,” said Valerie Mitchell, a San Francisco driver...

Mediator will hear beef between city administration, sanitation workers  Herald News  ...The Department of Labor Relations has approved neutral and non-binding mediation between the city and the sanitation union workers, 24 of whom are facing layoffs on June 30 as the administration moves ahead with privatizing trash pickup. Teamsters Local 251, which represents the city workers, filed a petition for mediation and fact-finding on June 16...

Teamsters Welcome New Deal on Canada Pension Plan  Teamsters Canada  ...The Teamsters Union, which represents 120,000 members across the country, welcomes the news of a breakthrough agreement to expand the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). The new agreement is the first significant increase in CPP benefits since the program’s creation in 1966. Employers and workers both contribute 4.95% of income between $3,500 and $54,900 under the current CPP. The new deal will raise the upper limit to $82,700 by 2025...

Osco Wrongfully Forcing Pharmacists to Work Mandatory Overtime  Local 727  ...Osco management in Chicago is attempting to force pharmacists to work mandatory overtime in order to attend meetings to discuss the company’s contract proposal. Teamsters Local 727 representatives have filed a grievance, which states, “There shall be no mandatory overtime in excess of the maximum workday or standard workweek except for vacation coverage and emergencies”...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

Mexico: Brutal Crackdown Confronts Teachers' Strike in Oaxaca  TeleSUR  ...Mexico's state federal police launched a new push against Mexico's striking teachers in Oaxaca in the latest stage of what the organized teachers have called a "big media, police and military offensive” to enforce unpopular neoliberal education reforms. Mexican police attacked teachers striking against the reforms in Oaxaca Sunday morning, killing at least eight people and leaving dozens more injured...

Norway oil drilling rig workers agree wage deal, avoid strike  Reuters  ...Workers on Norwegian offshore oil drilling rigs signed a new wage deal on Wednesday, avoiding a strike, labor unions and employers said in separate statements. Some 280 rig workers had threatened to strike if the talks failed, including staff on Rowan Companies' Viking and Gorilla rigs, and on the Statoil-operated Heidrun, Statfjord, Aasgard, Volve and Oseberg fields...

Canada: Union closer to first contract for Toyota workers  The Record  ...The ongoing drive to unionize Toyota employees in Cambridge and Woodstock is now fixated on maintenance workers. Unifor says it has signed a majority of 475 Toyota maintenance workers — 325 at two plants in Cambridge and 150 in Woodstock — to union cards. On Friday, it applied to the Ontario Labour Relations Board, asking for a secret-ballot vote to complete the union certification process...

White House ramping up pressure on Congress to pass TPP this year  The Hill  ...Top Obama administration officials are ramping efforts to convince Congress to pass an expansive Asia-Pacific trade agreement this year. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman continued the White House's full-court press to push the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) across Capitol Hill before President Obama leaves office... 

Why Mining Corporations Love Trade Deals  Huffington Post  ...From the salmon-spawning waters of Alaska to the cloud forests of Ecuador, communities are standing up to mining projects that threaten their health, environment, and livelihoods. But mining corporations are fighting back with a powerful tool buried in trade and investment agreements: the ability to go to private, unaccountable tribunals and sue governments that act to protect communities from mining...

Brexit is bigger than Britain: The global economy could hang in the balance  Salon  ...On June 23, citizens of the United Kingdom will go to the polls to vote on whether their country will remain a member of the European Union. While the outcome will have the greatest impact on residents of Europe, it will also affect the U.S. as well. And with the latest polls putting the “leave” campaign ahead of those for remaining in the EU, it’s essential that Americans understand just what’s at stake if a “Brexit” were to occur...

The Immigration Battle at the Heart of Brexit  The Atlantic  ...A former British minister’s apparent about-face on the U.K.’s continued membership in the European Union illustrates the central role immigration is playing both sides of the “Brexit” debate. Sayeeda Warsi said Monday she was now backing the “remain” campaign after, in her words, the “leave” campaign had abandoned its moderate message to become “small-minded, xenophobic and inward-looking”...

Refugee Planet: There Have Never Been This Many Displaced People on Earth  Common Dreams  ...An unprecedented 65.3 million people have been displaced around the world due to war and persecution, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) reported on Monday. The new figure is not only a 21st century record, it is also the first time that the numbers have surpassed 60 million...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Union supporters fight back against Right to Work in West Virginia  PR News  ...With West Virginia falling to Right to Work earlier this year, labor supporters in the state have vowed to unseat lawmakers who supported the controversial legislation… and they’ve marched through Charleston to show how serious they are. Late last week, the West Virginia AFL-CIO gathered its members for a demonstration to protest lawmakers who supported the recently enacted law...

The People Hurt By North Carolina’s ‘Bathroom Law’ Who Aren’t LGBT  Think Progress  ...One plank of the law that’s coming home to roost bars individuals from bringing “any civil action” based on state nondiscrimination protections, which includes the Equal Employment Practice Act. That means an employer could fire a worker solely for being black without worrying about a state lawsuit on their hands...

D.C. gives final approval to $15 minimum wage  Washington Post  ...D.C. lawmakers on Tuesday gave final approval to a bill that will ramp up the city’s hourly minimum wage to $15, lifting pay for most low-income workers in the city to among the highest in the country by the end of the decade. The District’s hourly minimum, now $10.50, was already scheduled to rise to $11.50 in July... 

These workers didn’t get the ‘living wage’ they were promised. Until now.  Washington Post  ...Workers shortchanged by companies under contract with Montgomery County for cleaning and other services have received over $300,000 in unpaid wages, county officials announced late last week. About a third of the money came from the settlement of a lawsuit filed against the county by some of the workers and one of the contractors...

A Key Swing State’s ‘Monster Voter Suppression’ Law Is Back On Trial  Think Progress  ...North Carolina’s voting laws went back to court on Tuesday, challenged by impacted voters like Stitt and civil rights groups who say the laws were passed with the intention of preserving Republicans’ political majority. Tuesday’s hearing is the next step in a multi-year legal battle over the law. After a conservative federal judge upheld the law in April, the plaintiffs appealed... 

The Takeover of Puerto Rico  Counterpunch  ...The Island of Puerto Rico is currently in the midst of an economic crisis. It has been reported that Puerto Rico’s government owes over 70 billion dollars in debt, mostly to investors holding state issued bonds, living in the continental United States. Unable to repay such a huge sum of debt Puerto Rico has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court attempting to restructure its financial obligations...

 

U.S. LABOR

Nurses’ Strike Enters Day 4  CBS  ...Thousands of Minneapolis nurses are entering their fourth day of a week-long strike. On Tuesday, the Nurses’ Association called on Minnesota’s attorney general to audit the finances of Allina hospitals. The union says Allina will reportedly spend more than $25 million to bring in replacement nurses for the strike...

Amid pilot shortage, Piedmont Airlines sweetens deal  Delmarva Now  ...Facing headwinds in its efforts to recruit new pilots, Piedmont Airlines, the Salisbury-based American Airlines subsidiary, is making an ascent with its incentives for prospective employees. The regional airline carrier has announced it is now offering a $15,000 signing bonus to new pilots and $5,000 to any employee who refers a pilot prospect who is ultimately hired...

Grocery workers approve a strike against supermarkets  LA Times  ...Grocery workers across Southern California voted to authorize a strike against Ralphs and Albertsons, which includes Vons, Pavilions and Safeway stores, union officials reported. The vote by 47,000 United Food and Commercial Workers members gives union officials the power to call for a strike if the supermarkets don’t back down on their demands... 

Kaleida Health reaches tentative labor deal covering 7,500 employees  Hosptial Review  ...Buffalo, N.Y.-based Kaleida Health has reached a tentative agreement with three unions. The three-year agreement, with the Communications Workers of America/AFL-CIO (CWA1168), International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE 17) and 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, covers 7,500 unionized employees.... 

AFL-CIO: Trump 'wants to break our backs'   Philly.com  ...Donald Trump has reached the brink of the Republican presidential nomination in part by selling himself as the solution to the working-class blues, but the nation’s top union official plans to tell a labor conference in Atlantic City Tuesday that it’s all a lie. “Donald Trump says he’s a friend of workers,” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka will say. “But Trump doesn’t have our backs -- he wants to break our backs”...

Does the Law Decide What Rights Are Afforded to Uber Drivers—or Does Uber?  The Nation  ...Uber drivers demanded the right to organize, and the on-demand economy delivered—at least, that’s what happened according to Uber. Rather than a union, the ride-sharing mega-corporation has been creating representative “associations” for drivers, supposedly to give them a democratic collective voice. But drivers are at the same time fighting in court for the right to hold the company accountable before the law...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

Anxiety as Families Await Court Ruling on Obama's Immigration Action  NBC  ...There is a communal breath holding going on among immigrants and their allies as they wait for a Supreme Court ruling that could profoundly alter their lives. The Supreme Court is nearing the end of this year's term and still must rule on the more than two dozen states' challenge of President's Barack Obama's use of executive action to suspended deportations and grant permits to work to millions of immigrants not legally in the U.S...

Warren slams 'fraud' Trump on taxes  Politico  ...It’s hard to talk about Donald Trump, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren said in a video out Tuesday. But that reality didn’t stop her from tearing into the presumptive Republican presidential nominee for refusing to release his tax returns. In a four-minute video released by the progressive organization MoveOn.org, Warren blasted the billionaire businessman...

Man Fined $450 For Stealing $5 Worth Of Food Accuses Court Of Profiting Off Debtors Prison  Think Progress  ...For stealing $5 worth of food to feed his family, Rozzie Scott says he was ordered to pay the Bogalusa City Court in Louisiana more than $450. Scott’s crime might have belied the fact that he is not flush with cash. But the judge told him he could either pay the court a $50 “extension fee” to buy himself more time to somehow get $450 or go to jail...

The Insane Southwest Heat Wave Is Just the Beginning  Mother Jones  ...Deadly, record-breaking heat and wildfires sweeping across the Southwestern US are a clear sign of manmade climate change at work, scientists say. Triple-digit temperatures began scorching Nevada, California, Arizona, Utah and New Mexico early this week. Some of the most intense heat was recorded throughout Arizona, where four hikers died in separate heat-related incidents...

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