Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News For September 9, 2016

TEAMSTERS

Teamsters Protest Virginia Corporate Welfare to "Job-Killer" MillerCoors  Teamster.org  ...The Virginia Economic Development Partnership board was confronted today by out-of-work Virginians protesting the commonwealth’s decision to provide a $500,000 grant to MillerCoors in exchange for only 27 new jobs at its Shenandoah Valley brewery. “Why should Virginia taxpayers subsidize a $21 billion company that is destroying more jobs than it is willing to create?” said Vernon Gammon, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 391, which represented the Eden brewery workers...

MillerCoors workers looking for state’s help to get new jobs at Elkton brewery  WSLS  ...A handful of the 122 Virginia workers who lost their jobs with the closing of the MillerCoors brewery in Eden, North Carolina showed up at the Virginia Economic Development Partnership board meeting in an effort to get new jobs at the brewery in Elkton, Virginia. “If you release this money, you should tell this company that the 122 families in the state of Virginia deserve the 27 jobs,” Vernon Gammon, treasury secretary for the Teamsters Local 391, said as he addressed the board members...

Teamsters UPS Airline Mechanics Hold Job Actions at Customer Locations in Indiana  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters Local 2727 airline maintenance technicians and related classifications picketed at customer locations in Indiana this week protesting deep concessionary contract proposals that would significantly increase health care costs and not improve wages for its members. Workers held signs that read “UPS: Corporate Greed, Don’t Take Our Health Care”...

Teamsters Call For Government Intervention In L.A. Ports Cargo Crisis Caused By Hanjin Bankruptcy  Labor Press  ...The bankruptcy of Hanjin, a major Korean shipper, is causing chaos at the Port of Los Angeles with dozens of ships and a half million cargo containers stranded at sea off the Port of Los Angeles. "There's tens of thousands of containers with consumer goods that are waiting to be either unloaded off ships or delivered to warehouses or brought back and loaded onto ships," said Patrick Kelly, Secretary Treasurer of Teamsters Local 952...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

UK rail workers 'solid' behind second day of strike action on Southern  Express  ...Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union are taking action in a long-running dispute over changes to the role of conductors. A series of strikes have been held in recent months but the dispute remains totally deadlocked, with the threat of further industrial action. Picket lines were again mounted outside stations including London Victoria and Brighton... 

Obama Promises Lame-Duck TPP Push Despite Uproar Over Pro-Corporate Provisions  The Intercept  ...A provision that would let foreign corporations challenge new American laws and regulations has become the latest flashpoint in the battle over the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement, even as President Obama on Tuesday said he will renew his push for its passage in the lame-duck session of Congress. “We’re in a political season now and it’s always difficult to get things done,” Obama said at a town hall meeting in Laos...

Ryan: White House Has to Fix TPP if Obama Wants a Vote  Morning Consult  ...Congress doesn’t have the votes to approve the Obama administration’s Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters Thursday. “They’ve gotta fix it,” the Wisconsin Republican said, referring to the White House, “and they haven’t done that.” Ryan added that he wouldn’t bring the bill up for a vote on the House floor until he’s sure it’ll pass: “I don’t think we should bring up a bill that goes down”...

TPP and U.S. dairy policy: fewer farms and raw milk down the sewers  IATP  ...The dairy import provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) will do nothing to stem the global raw milk price collapse that is driving U.S. dairy farmers out of business.  Those low prices provide very cheap raw materials to such mega-dairy processors as Kraft Foods, Dean Foods and Land O’Lakes...

The Trans-Pacific Partnership would hurt black and Hispanic workers even more than white workers  EPI.org  ...Six of the twelve members of the TPP are low-wage, developing countries, and if the TPP leads to expanding trade with these countries it will contribute to a continuing growth of imports and growing downward pressure on the wages of non-college educated workers. This deal would be especially harmful to black and Hispanic workers, who already suffer higher unemployment and lower wages than whites...

Defying Public Opinion, Merkel Vows to Fight for EU-US Trade Deal  Sputnik News  ...Despite growing opposition within Germany to the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) being negotiated between the EU and the US, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said she will fight to keep the talks on track...

Indian textile workers demand enforcement of 30 percent pay hike  Reuters  ...Hundreds of textile workers in India's Tamil Nadu state have launched protests to demand that the first minimum wage increase in the southern state in more than 12 years is enforced. In July, the Madras High Court ordered a pay rise of up to 30 percent for hundreds of thousands of garment workers in Tamil Nadu...

The Free-Marketeers Take Over in Brazil—and the US Applauds  The Nation  ...It’s easy to forget—especially in light of Washington’s support for what many are calling the “soft” coup in Brazil, which has led to the ouster of President Dilma Rousseff and the end of 13 years of Workers’ Party (PT) governance—that international financial institutions welcomed the PT’s rise to power in 2002. In the shadow of Asia’s 1997 financial crisis and Argentina’s 2001 economic meltdown, the managers of post–Cold War globalization were fearful of, as World Bank president James Wolfensohn put it, “social explosions”...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

Idaho’s ‘right-to-work’ law faces court challenge over fees  Spokesman-Review  ...If a lawsuit now pending in federal court succeeds, non-union workers in Idaho could be required to pay some fees to unions that represent them, for the first time since Idaho enacted its "right-to-work" law in 1985. The lawsuit, one of several pending in three states, argues that it’s unconstitutional to require unions to spend money and time representing non-members...

Voters to decide if ‘right to work’ law goes into Virginia’s constitution  WAVY  ...Richmond lawmakers have scheduled a November showdown for the state’s “right to work” law. On this year’s ballot, you will see an option to make the law part of the state’s constitution. It’s a move that has union leaders on edge and business leaders all-in for the vote. But what happens if the law becomes part of the constitution?...

Dozens Of North Carolina Counties Slash Early Voting Weeks Before Election Day  Think Progress  ...Lenoir County is one of dozens of Republican-controlled counties effectively defying a July court ruling that blocked North Carolina’s plan to cut early voting on the grounds the move intentionally targeted black voters — who depend on early voting — with “surgical precision.” The sole black and Democratic election board member in Lenoir County, Courtney Patterson, called the move “equal to voter suppression"...

Workers Paid by Card Will Gain Protections in New York State  NY Times  ...Workers in New York State who receive their wages on prepaid cards will gain consumer protections next year that advocates say are among the strongest in the nation. The new rules are intended to guarantee that employees do not have to pay any fees to gain access to their paychecks...

Rauner’s war against public sector unions makes no economic sense  (opinion) Chicago Reporter  ...State workers face an even more difficult situation, facing off against Gov. Bruce Rauner, who would just as soon dispense with unions altogether. Rauner walked out of talks and has refused to negotiate with AFSCME since January, but an administrative law judge ruled last week against the governor’s attempt to declare an impasse in negotiations and impose a settlement...

Hedge Funds Attack Ohio: How Wall Street Greed Has Destroyed Jobs and Harmed the Economy in the Buckeye State  Hedge Clippers  ...The issues of job loss, outsourcing, trade and the economy are front and center in this year’s elections, especially in Ohio. Yet there hasn’t been nearly enough attention on the role of Wall Street investors and hedge fund managers in the destruction of American jobs here. These influential figures from New York’s wealthy elite are also among the biggest contributors of campaign cash to politicians who have harmed Ohio’s working families...

 

U.S. LABOR

Dominion Union Employees Locked Out  The Intelligencer  ...More than 900 Dominion Hope and Dominion Transmission employees are locked out of work this morning by the company as contract negotiations between the union and company have failed. A release issued by the company states that it took action after Local 69 of the Utility Workers Union of America, United Gas Workers “refused to take a tentative contract agreement to union members for a vote"...

MBTA union members to rally against privatization on Monday  Boston Globe  ...The fight over privatization at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is just warming up, and the T’s largest labor group is gathering its members for battle on Monday. After the MBTA’s board filed a report saying it could outsource driver and maintenance jobs, union officials are asking members to rally before a Monday fiscal and management control board meeting. Union leaders asked supporters to show up to “make our voices heard”...

Court ruling deals blow to 385,000 Uber drivers  SF Chronicle  ...A federal appeals court dealt a severe blow Wednesday to an attempt by 385,000 drivers for the ride-hailing company Uber in California and Massachusetts to sue for employment status. The ruling apparently requires virtually all of them to take their individual claims to private arbitrators rather than joining in a class-action lawsuit...

Denver Taxi Drivers Are Turning Uber’s Disruption on Its Head  The Nation  ...In a moment when the taxi inudustry here and virtually everywhere faces an existential disruption from Silicon Valley apps, these immigrant workers - with the backing of CWA Local 7777 - are self-funding a business model that puts them in control, turning the Uber model on its head. They hope that without the bosses skimming profits, they'll be able to take home enough to make driving a decent livelihood in the age of apps - with an app of their own...

NLRB Defends Joint-Employer Rule At DC Circ.  Law 360  ...The National Labor Relations Board pushed back at Browning-Ferris Industries’ appeal of the standard the board applied to name it a joint employer in a dispute with workers, saying the waste management company’s ire over the standard clarification was overblown. Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc. had in June challenged the NLRB’s adoption of a looser joint-employer test...

US prisoners are going on strike to protest a massive forced labor system  Quartz  ...On Friday (Sept. 9) prison inmates across the US will participate in what organizers are touting as the “largest prison strike in history,” stopping work in protest of what many call a modern version of slavery. The protest, organized across 24 states, is spearheaded by the inmate-led Free Alabama Movement (FAM) and coordinated by the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC), a branch of an international labor union...

People With Disabilities Aren’t Entitled to the Minimum Wage  The Nation  ...The old labor motto goes, “From each according to ability, to each according to need,” but hundreds of thousands of people are stuck in jobs that pay according to their disability, and end up with jobs that match neither ability nor need. Although federal labor law’s guiding principle is “equal pay for equal work,” workers with disabilities are categorically restricted from earning equal pay under antiquated federal labor law...

Don’t Blame A ‘Skills Gap’ For Lack Of Hiring In Manufacturing  FiveThirtyEight  ...This “skills mismatch” theory is a favorite of corporate executives and the think tanks they fund. But it is based on scant evidence. Individual companies may be struggling to fill specific jobs, but the data shows little sign of an industry-wide shortage of skilled workers. In fact, it’s not clear that companies are really trying hard to fill many of these jobs at all...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS

House Republicans Who Favor Immigration Overhaul Face Potential Losses  NY Times  ...Several of the most ardent Republican supporters of an immigration overhaul are locked in fierce election fights, potentially leaving an even more conservative party in the House that will be less willing to negotiate on fixing the immigration system. For many members of Congress, being open to an immigration overhaul is increasingly a matter of political survival...

Warren and Sanders Lead Probe Into 'Dangerous, Irresponsible' Aetna Ploy  Common Dreams  ...In a letter sent Thursday to Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini, Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), probe the events that led up to last month's announcement that the insurance behemoth would pull out of 11 of the 15 states where it sells Obamacare plans...

Latino Group Launched 'Gauc the Vote' Effort to Register Voters at Taco Trucks  US Uncut  ...The U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) is attempting to rally around the infamous “taco trucks on every corner” threat made by a Trump supporter and turn it into a mobilizing effort to register Latino Americans to vote. Titled Guac the Vote, Chamber of Commerce President Javier Palomarez is in the process of setting up voter registration opportunities outside taco trucks...

The Planet Is Going Through A ‘Catastrophic’ Wilderness Loss, Study Says  Think Progress  ...A tenth of the planet’s wilderness was eradicated in the last two decades and conservation efforts are failing to keep pace with the rate of wilderness loss, according to a new study. The loss recorded since 1990 is equivalent to an area twice the size of Alaska and half the size of the Amazon, according to the study published Thursday in Current Biology...