Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News For January 31, 2017

TEAMSTERS

Minnesota Teamsters: O'Reilly Auto Parts Faces Distribution Crisis as Amazon Threat Looms  Teamster.org  ...O’Reilly Auto Parts drivers, represented by Teamsters Local 120, voted overwhelmingly yesterday to reject the company’s contract offer. Workers say management’s demands will create safety risks for drivers on the road, undermine their living standards and introduce inefficiencies in the company’s distribution system...

Statement on the Shooting at the Quebec City Islamic Cultural Centre Teamsters Canada  ...The recent shooting at the Québec City Islamic Cultural Centre has profoundly shaken us. The hatred behind this attack is plainly and clearly a hatred of the diversity that is the strength of our union and our country. Each and every one of us has a Muslim friend, neighbour, or co-worker. These good, honest, hard-working people deserve as much respect as any other Canadian...

Local 118 And Genesee Brewery Reach New Deal  Teamster.org  ...Members of Teamsters Local 118, Rochester, New York, have overwhelmingly voted in favor of a new four-year contract reached with Genesee Brewing Company. Some highlights of the new agreement include: wage increases in excess of 13 percent over the term of the agreement; increased pension contributions...

Carhaul Local Union Leaders to Review Tentative Agreement on February 16  Teamster.org  ...Leaders of local unions that represent Teamster carhaul members will meet on Thursday, February 16 to review the tentative carhaul agreement and supplements. The meeting will take place in Detroit. If local union leaders agree to endorse the tentative agreement and supplements, it will go to carhaul members for a ratification vote...

Local 727 Files Unfair Labor Charges Against CDT for Unlawful Actions  Local 727  ...Teamsters Local 727 has filed unfair labor practice charges against Cook-DuPage Transportation (CDT) to uphold a settlement agreement and enforce labor laws protecting workers’ wages and job classifications. On Dec. 26, 2016, Local 727 and CDT reached agreement to ensure all drivers, including those not already in training, would begin receiving the company’s van wage rate...

Penske Logistics to Settle California Truckers’ Lawsuit for $750,000  Trucks.com  ...Penske Logistics will pay $750,000 to settle a long-standing dispute over wages for meal and rest breaks for its drivers in California, ending nine years of litigation. The truckers and Penske reached a proposed settlement, “which they believe to be fair, reasonable and adequate,” according to court documents filed Jan. 23. The Teamsters have lobbied hard against such a change that would block states from imposing their own rules over trucking, including meal and rest break requirements...

Local Unions To Rally In Support Of SAG-AFTRA Video Game Strike  Deadline  ...A rally Thursday in support of SAG-AFTRA’s 102-day-old strike against selected video game companies promises to be the union’s biggest to date, with actors being joined by members of the Writers Guild, Teamsters Local 399, the American Federation of Musicians, and representatives from the L.A. County Federation of Labor...

Delegation to Take Up Union Contract; Employees to Pay Part of Health Care  Laconia Daily Sun  ...The Belknap County Delegation will take up a collective bargaining agreement which was recently reached between Belknap County Commissioners and Teamsters Local 633 when it meets tonight at 6 p.m. at the Belknap County complex. The two-year agreement the union, which represents 23 mid-level county employees in several departments, provides cost-of-living and step increases, as well as a $1,000 one-time health incentive bonus...

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

Austria: Anti CETA, TTIP petition signed by 562,000  AP  ...An Austrian petition against EU free trade agreements with the United States and Canada has been signed by 562,000 people, and organizers are calling for parliament to reject both pacts. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade agreement with Canada already has been approved by the EU parliament. Work on a similar pact with the U.S. dubbed TTIP has barely advanced this year and has been further set back by the new U.S. administration's push to protect American markets...

Trump, Democrats And The Left Killed Obama’s Biggest Trade Deal. Here’s How It Happened.  Huffington Post  ...On Monday, President Donald Trump formally withdrew the United States from one of his predecessor’s signature foreign policy projects, ending an eight-year endeavor Barack Obama had hoped would reshape American influence on four continents. It was, oddly, a victory for the Democratic Party. Labor unions, environmental groups, public health experts, liberal economists and consumer watchdogs had all been denouncing the Trans-Pacific Partnership for years... 

Growth in U.S.-China Trade Deficit Between 2001 and 2015 Cost 3.4 Million Jobs  EPI  ...Millions of Americans have lost their jobs due to the massive trade deficit with China. Nearly three-fourths of these lost jobs were in manufacturing, and every state and congressional district saw job loss. 3.4 million U.S. jobs were lost between 2001 and 2015 due to the trade deficit with China. 2.6 million manufacturing jobs were displaced... 

Trump Backlash Turns Mexicans Against Nafta  Bloomberg  ...The Zocalo, a vast square in the heart of Mexico City, has been a gathering place since the days of the Spanish conquistadors. Walk through it today and you’ll encounter many proclaiming to be fed up with Nafta. Trump’s pledge to rewrite the trade pact doesn’t go far enough for them. It should be scrapped entirely...

Florida-Mexico trade summit put on hold as Trump-Mexico tensions grow  Tampa Bay Times  ...A trade summit meant to foster better ties between Mexico and Florida businesses set for Feb. 22 in Orlando was abruptly postponed Monday less than a week after Trump threatened a 20 percent border tax on Mexican products coming into the U.S. and just days after the President of Mexico canceled his meeting with Trump over the tension...

NAFTA’s Corporate Goodies Are Its Biggest Problem  (opinion) New York Times  ...Tto get the trade deficit reduction and job creation Trump promised, a replacement of NAFTA would be needed. It won't be fixed by mere tweaks. Even if NAFTA were eliminated, trade would not revert to pre-NAFTA tariff levels. The NAFTA nations are all World Trade Organization signatories...

'Catastrophic Effect': More Austerity Measures Could Force Greece to Exit the EU  Sputnik News  ...The Greek government has just three weeks to secure a deal with the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to avoid the possibility of a Greek exit from the EU and a fresh debt crisis... 

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES

MO Lawmakers Consider Reducing Unemployment Benefits  Ozarks First  ...Eligibility for unemployment benefits would be reduced by seven weeks - from 20 to 13- under a proposal now being considered by Missouri lawmakers. The measure would also requires more money to be in the state’s unemployment trust fund before employers get a discount on their contributions into it. Tracy King with the Missouri Chamber of Commerce, which supports the proposal, says it’s meant to protect the trust fund from recession shortfalls...

'Right-to-work' headed to final major vote on House floor  Missourian  ...Only one major step remains before lawmakers give final approval to banning mandatory union fees in Missouri. Republicans and proponents of "right-to-work" say that the law would be a boon to Missouri's economy, resulting in higher wages and more jobs. Opponents of the legislation, which includes organized labor, say that "right-to-work" lowers wages and reduces the amount of skilled laborers... 

Ky. falls in lockstep with Koch agenda  (opinion) Kentucky.com  ...Kentucky’s Republican legislative majority and Tea Party governor debuted dancing to tunes played by the radical right billionaire Koch brothers. The Koch lobbying arm, Americans for Prosperity, which should be called “Americans for Inequality,” gave bucks to elect Republican legislators and sent its paid operatives and hangers-on to pack a hearing room to cheer for the union busting right-to-work-for-low-wages law...

Labor Unions Appear Set For More State-Level Defeats In 2017  NPR  ...One consequence of Republican gains in the 2016 elections is playing out at the state level where organized labor appears likely to face big setbacks in the coming months. Within days of convening this month, Kentucky lawmakers passed "right-to-work" legislation that prohibit labor unions from forcing non-union members to pay fees to the union. It's the 27th state with such laws... 

Can Labor Fight Back?  (opinion) American Prospect  ...As the former union bastions of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin flipped from blue to red on election night, the once-mighty American labor movement saw its life flash before its eyes. The impending GOP attack on organized labor and workers will have multiple fronts: executive action, legislation, court rulings—and with Republicans in control of more than half the states, not just the federal government...

 

U.S. LABOR 

GOP introduces national right-to-work legislation  Washington Examiner  ...Republicans in Congress plan to introduce legislation Wednesday that would prohibit workers nationwide from being forced to support a union. The national right-to-work legislation likely would be a major blow to organized labor because it would allow millions of workers to opt out of union membership for the first time...

Communications Union Escalates Effort to Organize Bank Staff  Bloomberg  ...The Communications Workers of America, undeterred by new threats to unions’ funds and clout, is pressing ahead with its plan to organize the retail banking industry with the belief that recent rage at banks can help force the virtually union-free sector to negotiate. The CWA points to strides it has made since it began its approach in 2014, winning the support of about 20,000 employees at banks including JP Morgan Chase & Co., U.S. Bank and Bank of America Corp...

Workers seek to bring union to Nissan's U.S. plants  USA Today  ...The Nashville protest comes after years of efforts by the United Auto Workers to unionize workers at the Canton plant, which opened in 2003 and employs roughly 5,000 workers. The plant produces eight vehicle models with a capacity of 450,000 vehicles per year. The Canton plant has faced longstanding criticisms from the UAW about worker safety...

R.I. Unions Gained Representation Of 6,000 New Workers In 2016  RI NPR  ...Organized labor has faced tough times in recent years as manufacturing has moved abroad, Republican governors and legislators have gone after public employee unions, and weak labor laws make union organizing more difficult. But workers in some states, including Rhode Island, still value union representation...

Strike vote by big Illinois worker union starts Monday  Chicago Tribune  ...Voting begins Monday in a first-ever strike authorization vote by Illinois’ largest state worker union. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31 is taking the unprecedented step of asking its nearly 30,000 members who are eligible to strike if they would be willing to do so in order to counter the contract demands coming from Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner...

Teachers Union Battle Escalates at KIPP Charter School  American Prospect  ...Public school advocates and labor unions have been pressuring members on the Senate education committee to vote Tuesday against Betsy DeVos, Donald Trump’s controversial pick to head the federal education department. Pointing to the Republican billionaire’s track record in politics, advocacy, and philanthropy, critics argue that she represents an existential threat to public schooling...

Most Americans see labor unions, corporations favorably  Pew Research  ...About six-in-ten adults today have a favorable view of labor unions (60%) and business corporations (56%), according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Views of both have grown more positive since March 2015, when roughly half of adults (48%) expressed a favorable view of each. The public’s opinions of corporations and unions were largely positive throughout the early 2000s, but turned more negative during the Great Recession... 

How a Trump Supreme Court Pick Could (or Could Not) Sway Cases  New York Times  ...Since the death of Justice Antonin Scalia last February, the Supreme Court has been evenly divided between Democratic appointees and Republican ones. A new justice appointed by President Trump would revitalize the court’s conservative bloc. A threat to public sector unions that ended in a deadlock last March could soon reach the court again...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS 

The American Civil Liberties Union raised six times as much online this weekend as it normally gets in a year  Quartz  ...Americans are pouring money into the protection of human rights after US president Donald Trump imposed a travel ban on refugees and travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries trying to enter the US. The ACLU, a non-governmental organization that sued the administration over the ban, said people donated $24.2 million online to the organization over the weekend... 

Teachers, parents, kids protest DeVos education nomination ahead of Senate vote  Washington Post  ...A crowd of teachers, parents and children gathered near the U.S. Capitol on Sunday to protest Betsy DeVos’s nomination to be education secretary, calling the Michigan billionaire a threat to public education and urging the Senate to reject her. Using drums and noisemakers, the group of protesters chanted “Toss DeVos”...

Schumer to vote against several top Trump nominees  The Hill  ...Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced on Monday that he will oppose five additional nominees for President Trump's Cabinet, calling them "the worst" of his picks. He added that he will oppose nominees "who will be the very worst of this anti-immigrant, anti-middle-class, billionaires’ club cabinet"...

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