Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

Today's Teamster News For January 18, 2017

PROGRAMMING NOTE: Due to inauguration activities and high security shutting down portions of Washington DC this week, the Teamsters headquarters will be closed on Thursday and Friday. We will resume our daily news roundup posts on Monday, Jan. 23.

 

TEAMSTERS

Newest Members at Ferguson Overwhelmingly Ratify First Teamster Contract  Local 710  ...Twenty-nine Teamsters Local 710 warehouse members at Ferguson overwhelmingly ratified their first union contract by nearly a 7-to-1 margin. The agreement is in effect through March 31, 2019. The contract follows that of the Local 710 Ferguson drivers with a Memorandum of Understanding detailing specific benefits for the warehouse members...

Wichita Transit plans to share savings with employees  Wichita Eagle  ...Wichita Transit has approved a new three-year contract with the Teamsters Union, agreeing to share some savings if labor and management can cooperate to reduce workers’ overtime. The pact will give transit employees a 2.5 percent raise Jan. 28 plus an additional .5 percent on June 3. Those raises will be across the board; no merit increases will be given...

Local 727 Fights for Better Pharmacy Standards, Working Conditions  Local 727  ...Teamsters Local 727 last year met with Illinois state representatives and prepared proposals for new legislation aimed at addressing the concerns of Teamster-represented Osco and CVS pharmacists. After Local 727’s actions, some changes were made to Illinois pharmacy regulatory rules. “It was nice to see some changes made to the rules, but the changes did not go far enough, and pharmacy work standards have only worsened,” said John Coli Jr., President of Local 727...

Tacoma school bus drivers say they want better health care coverage  News Tribune  ...Tacoma school bus drivers will vote for a fourth time Wednesday (Jan. 18) on a new contract with Durham School Services — the private company that Tacoma Public Schools pays to transport an estimated 6,000 students each day. The drivers, represented by Teamsters Local 313, have repeatedly turned down offers from the Illinois-based company...

St. Paul teaching assistants ready to vote on 27% raise to base hourly pay  Twin Cities  ...Local labor organizers are hailing the tentative agreement as a win for the national campaign for a $15 minimum hourly wage. That milestone represents a 27 percent increase from the position’s current starting rate of $11.79 per hour. Teamsters Local 320 president Sami Gabriel said roughly 450 of the district’s 650 teaching assistants now make less than $15 per hour...

Uber challenges Seattle’s driver-unionization rules  Seattle Times  ...The ride-hailing service Uber on Tuesday filed a legal challenge over the Seattle ordinance giving drivers the power to unionize. The officials released draft rules in November, drawing criticism from both Uber and Teamsters Local 117, which had pushed for the ordinance...

Capreol plant closing  Sudbury Star  ...Twenty-four employees with the National Railway Equipment Co. in Capreol have been told the plant is closing and they will lose their jobs Feb. 28. The workers, members of Teamsters Canada Rail Conference, Maintenance of Way Employees' Division, were notified Jan. 11 that they will be out of work Feb. 28...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE 

Bangladesh: Campaign to Silence Garment Workers  Solidarity Center  ...The Solidarity Center warns that the broad crackdown on garment workers, union leaders and worker rights activists in Bangladesh marks a troubling escalation of efforts to silence garment workers and criminalize their fundamental rights to organize, speak to power and improve their lives and livelihoods. In a new briefing document, the Solidarity Center outlines the intimidation, arrests and firings that followed a garment worker walk-out in December...

Argentinian Workers of Clarín Still on Strike Despite Repression  Prensa Latina  ...The 400 Argentinian workers that were fired from the printing plant of River Plate Graphic Arts (AGR), of Grupo Clarín company, still stand fighting today after the severe repression they suffered this Tuesday. The company issued a statement justifying the layoffs...

Groups from Mexico, Canada and the U.S. Demand NAFTA Replacement  Citizen Trade  ...Anticipating an announcement from the president-elect to either renegotiate or withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) — as well as reactions from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto — broad civil society networks from Mexico, the United States, Canada and Quebec are making clear to their governments that any renegotiation process must be transparent and participatory...

EU, US Take Stock Of TTIP Negotiations  Tax-News  ...The EU and US have published a joint assessment of the progress made in the negotiations for a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Between July 2013 and October 2016, 15 negotiating rounds were held. The report, released on January 17, said: "TTIP has the potential to turn the already immensely successful US and EU economic relationship into an even stronger driver of mutual prosperity for decades to come"...

Businesses Push Donald Trump to Salvage Pacific Trade Pact  Wall Street Journal  ...Business and agricultural groups are lobbying the president-elect's transition officials to salvage a Pacific trade deal that would knit together the U.S. and Asian countries, despite the plan to scrap the agreement. The business groups are arguing that the new administration doesn’t have to accept the current Trans-Pacific Partnership, a 12-nation Pacific Rim accord negotiated by the Obama administration. Rather it could look...

World’s 8 Richest Have as Much Wealth as Bottom Half, Oxfam Says  New York Times  ...How concentrated has wealth become in the globalized modern world? Here’s one answer: Just eight of the richest people on earth own as much combined wealth as half the human race. That’s a notable change from last year, when it was reckoned to take 62 of the superrich to match the assets of the 3.6 billion people in the poorer half of mankind...

Nobel economist: One-percenters, pay your taxes  (opinion) CNN  ...In recent years, business leaders at Davos, the World Economic Forum's annual meeting, have ranked inequality as one of the greatest risks to the global economy. Is there anything that the world's corporations can do about this scourge that threatens the political, social, and economic sustainability of our democratic market economies? The answer is yes. It begins with a simple idea: pay your taxes...

U.S. Ranks 23rd Out of 30 Developed Countries for Inequality  The Atlantic  ...The United States is one of the richest countries in the world. It is also one of the most unequal. As a report released today shows, the U.S. ranks 23 out of 30 developed nations in a measure known as the “inclusive development index,” which factors in data on income, health, poverty, and sustainability. The index comes from the World Economic Forum, whose annual summit is taking place in Davos this week...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES 

Missouri House Members React to Governor on Right-to-Work  Ozarks First  ...The controversial issue of right-to-work mainly fell along party lines during Missouri Governor Eric Greitens’ (R) State of the State Address on Tuesday night in Jefferson City. In addition to calling on Missouri lawmakers to pass right-to-work, Greitens also urges the Legislature to eliminate project labor agreements and to repeal Missouri’s version of the Davis-Bacon Act. Davis-Bacon involves the prevailing wage...

Nearly 7,000 descend on Washington state Capitol to call on state to fully fund education  The Olympian  ...A raucous crowd, estimated by organizers at 6,500 people, descended Monday on the Capitol Campus, loudly calling on lawmakers to fully fund K-12 education. The Martin Luther King Jr. Day gathering was organized by the Washington Education Association and other sponsors, bringing together parents, educators and community leaders to support “education that is amply funded for all students in this state,” said Kim Mead, president of the association...

Missouri Supreme Court orders KC to put higher minimum wage on the ballot  Kansas City Star  ...The Missouri Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered Kansas City to put a proposal on the ballot that could eventually boost the city’s minimum wage to $15 a hour. The high court reversed a trial judge’s ruling that said a state law prohibited the city from adopting a minimum wage different from the state’s base wage, which is $7.70 as of Jan. 1...

How California is leading the charge on Fight for $15  SacBee  ...California didn’t get the nation’s biggest minimum wage increase at the start of 2017. But its 50-cent hike to $10.50 an hour did help the most workers by far (more than 1.7 million, or nearly 11 percent of the workforce) and produce the largest increase in total wages (nearly $1.5 billion a year)...

Maryland county passes $15 minimum wage for most businesses  Washington Post  ...Legislation to raise Montgomery County’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2020 passed the County Council on a 5-to-4 vote Tuesday, but it is unclear whether County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) will allow the measure to become law. The affluent county of about 1 million would be the first jurisdiction in Maryland — and the second in the Washington area after the District — to adopt a $15 hourly minimum wage...

Will States Take Up the Mantle of Worker Protection?  The Atlantic  ...Since November’s election, labor advocates have been bracing themselves for an administration they fear will be kinder to owners than to workers. Since November’s election, labor advocates have been bracing themselves for an administration they fear will be kinder to owners than to workers...

 

U.S. LABOR 

SEIU's food service workers approve Mayo proposal  Post-Bulletin  ...SEIU Healthcare Minnesota announced today that the union's 500 food service workers in Rochester and Albert Lea have approved the first of two votes required to accept a Mayo Clinic compromise over its plans to outsource its food service. The workers' approval is the first step toward ending what's been a bitter, public battle, which began with SEIU accusing Mayo Clinic of a "race to the bottom" that would hurt workers when the outsourcing plan was announced on June 30...

Minnesota Medical Marijuana Company Ratifies Agreement With Labor Union  Weed News  ...United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 1189 medical cannabis workers unanimously ratified a new 3-year Agreement with their employer, Minnesota Medical Solutions on Thursday, January 12, 2017. “We were really pleased to be able to recommend this offer to our members,” said Jennifer Christensen, President of Local 1189...

Justices Will Hear Challenges to Mandatory Employee Arbitration  New York Times  ... The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to decide whether companies can use employment contracts to prohibit workers from banding together to take legal action over workplace issues. The court accepted three cases on the subject. They follow a series of Supreme Court decisions endorsing similar provisions, generally in contracts with consumers. The question for the justices in the new cases is whether the same principles apply to employment contracts...

Students Puzzle Over ‘Surprising’ Unionization Vote Count  The Harvard Crimson  ...For many students on both sides of the unionization question, this initial vote count and the stalled progress of the unionization effort is surprising. Between the UAW's campaign to win votes, Harvard's initiatives to oppose unionization, and divisions between graduate students in the sciences and engineering and graduate students in the humanities, students say a variety of factors contributed to the unexpected outcome...

Debit-Card Paychecks Put Hardee’s Workers Below Minimum Wage  Labor Press  ...The fast-food chain headed by Secretary of Labor nominee Andrew Puzder refused to give workers back pay for minimum-wage violations in 2014, according to records of a departmental investigation obtained by the Center for American Progress. It found that the Hardee’s burger chain paid workers with Visa debit cards instead of checks, and that the fees charged on those cards reduced their net pay to less than $7.25 an hour...

Betsy DeVos omitted $125,000 anti-union political donation from Senate disclosure form  Washington Post  ....The president-elect's transition team acknowledged Friday that Betsy DeVos, Donald Trump’s pick for education secretary, omitted a $125,000 political donation from disclosures she submitted to a Senate committee in advance of her confirmation hearing, which is scheduled for Tuesday. “We appreciate this being called to our attention and we will be updating our committee submission,” a transition team spokeswoman said Friday...

Outgoing OPM chief hits incoming GOP policies on hiring and firing feds  Washington Post  ...Cobert, during an exit interview with Washington Post reporters and without mentioning anyone’s name, cautioned against a broad hiring freeze of the kind that the new administration has proposed, and she warned about the dangers of congressional assaults on civil service due-process rights...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS 

Financial security may be out of reach for millennials: research  Raw Story  ...Millennials are on shaky ground, struggling to gain the same financial security afforded to their parents, new data analysis suggests. When baby boomers were young adults, their net worth was double that of today's young people, who earn $10,000 less than their counterparts did in 1989, according to findings from advocacy group Young Invincibles... 

Obama Sends $500 Million to Green Climate Fund, Signaling End to Era  Common Dreams  ...The Obama administration on Tuesday sent another $500 million to the Green Climate Fund, which was established as part of the Paris climate agreement to collect aid from wealthy countries to help frontline nations adapt to the impacts of global warming. The contribution marks one of President Barack Obama's last moves before leaving office and handing the presidency to an administration staffed largely by climate deniers...

Obama commutes sentence for political prisoner Oscar López Rivera  The Guardian  ...Barack Obama has commuted the sentence of Oscar López Rivera, a victory for the Puerto Rican independence activist who is considered to be one of the world’s longest-serving political prisoners. In his final days in office, Obama has issued a record number of pardons and commutations, including granting the release of Chelsea Manning on Tuesday...

Sign Up For Action Alerts

Mobile alerts from Teamsters. Periodic messages. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to 86466 to stop receiving messages. Text HELP to 86466 for more information.Terms & Conditions