Teamsters

North America's Strongest Union

This Week's Teamster News for July 29-August 4

 

TEAMSTERS

Contract Campaigns & Strikes

Teamsters at the Pike Place Market Ratify New 3-Year Contract  Local 117  ...Teamsters who work at Pike Place Market voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new 3-year contract on Wednesday. The fully-recommended agreement provides a minimum of 3% wage increases in each year of the contract, limits on temps, improvements to holiday pay, and improvements to safety, training and health and welfare language...

Airport workers on strike at Pearson over health benefits  Benefits Canada  ...More than 700 airport workers employed by Swissport Canada Handling at Toronto Pearson International Airport walked off the job last week in a dispute over benefits, a pay freeze and volatile schedules. The employees, who perform flight operations, handle baggage, tow planes and clean cabins, are striking due to a number of claims Swissport’s management refuses to discuss, according to their union, Teamsters Local 419...

Another contract fight looming at Fred Meyer as members authorize a strike  Local 117  ...The grocery giant Fred Meyer/Kroger has a history of testing our members’ resolve. Now, history is repeating itself. The company is refusing again to maintain industry standards by insisting on an offer that is inferior to the contract recently ratified by our members at Safeway. But just like in the past, Local 117 members at Fred Meyer are not backing down...

Gig Economy Organizing

Teamster drivers applaud judge's ruling to dismiss challenge to for-hire law  Local 117  ...Seattle for-hire drivers who are seeking to unionize under the city’s new collective bargaining law applauded a federal judge’s ruling to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce challenging the law. “We’ve been waiting for this day, waiting to join the union and to have the right to negotiate with Uber,” said Mustafe Abdi, who has been driving with Uber for three years...

Judge dismisses lawsuit seeking to block Seattle law allowing Uber and Lyft drivers to unionize  Seattle Times  ...Seattle’s law would allow them to decide whether they want to unionize and then to collectively bargain for things like pay, benefits and better working conditions. Teamsters Local 117 has gotten permission from the city to begin organizing drivers, if and when the law goes into effect...

Judge dismisses challenge to Seattle ridesharing-union law  Washington Post  ...A federal judge on Tuesday dismissed one challenge to Seattle’s first-in-the-nation law allowing drivers of ride-hailing companies such as Uber and Lyft to unionize with the Teamsters over pay and working conditions. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which represents Uber and Lyft, sued in March to block the law. U.S. District Judge Robert Lasnik threw out the challenge...

The effort to unionize Seattle’s Lyft and Uber drivers just cleared another legal hurdle  Quartz  ...A US district judge dismissed a lawsuit on Aug. 1 that will keep alive the Teamsters’ effort to unionize Lyft, Uber, and other independent drivers in Seattle—at least for now. The unionization effort has faced atypical challenges from the beginning. Independent contractors cannot legally unionize under most circumstances...

Locals

Teamsters Win Pay Raises for North Carolina School Workers and Bus Drivers  Teamster.org  ...On July 1, school support personnel throughout North Carolina received the largest state legislated pay increase in eight years.  The state budget also included a $16.8 million provision dedicated to raising the average rate of pay for school bus drivers. The increases come after several years of intense lobbying by Teamsters Local 391. The pay raises are part of the budget passed by the North Carolina General Assembly...

Ryder Logistics Drivers Vote to Join Teamsters Local 325  Teamster.org  ...Workers at Ryder Logistics in Belvidere, Ill. voted to join Teamsters Local 325. The newest members are drivers that transport freight to a Chrysler plant through a company that contracts with Ryder Logistics, Magna International. “We’re thrilled to welcome our newest members into the Teamster union,” said Erik Calvert, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 325...

Sand & Gravel Update: Another Lowball Offer Rejected as the Probability of Strike Increases  Local 174  ...For the second time in a week, concrete trucks across the Seattle area sat empty as their drivers attended another meeting at the Local 174 Union Hall to discuss their Employers’ latest contract offer. And also for the second time in a week, the Companies’ lowball offer was rejected with a boisterous voice vote, as the group unanimously agreed that the offer was not even worth voting...

Tech bus shuttle operator Bauer’s receives self-driving test permit  Business Times  ...Tech industry bus shuttle operator Bauer’s Intelligent Transportation has received a self-driving test permit, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The Teamsters are concerned because this development may put some drivers out of work. “I don’t think our people who work for Bauer’s feel any different than anyone else who drives a truck or bus. They’re concerned,” said Doug Bloch, political director of Teamsters Joint Council 7...

Political Action

Hoffa: Get serious about good jobs  The Detroit News  ...Teamsters were encouraged to see congressional Democrats last week roll out a new agenda that will focus on raising wages and improving jobs skills. It also stressed that workers should be treated fairly when it comes to job protections, health care, work-life balance and retirement...

Teamsters Local 416 President Testifies on NAFTA Impact on Ohio  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters Local Union 416 President Nick “Sonny” Nardi at the NAFTA Field Hearing at UAW Local 1250: "In May 2000, 320 Teamsters got laid off from the Mr. Coffee plant in Glenwillow, about 20 miles east of here.  Their jobs went to Mexico because of the North American Free Trade Agreement. My Local, Teamsters 416, lost hundreds of jobs to NAFTA"...

Teamsters convince Congress to block driverless trucks  The Next Web  ...The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, a union representing 1.4 million members, is fighting tooth-and-nail against the legal implementation of autonomous trucks in the US. Last week it successfully lobbied Congress to place a 10,000 pound weight-limit on current driverless vehicle legislation...

Teamsters Support Bipartisan Effort In Senate To Repeal Cadillac Tax  STL News  ..."Currently, the excise tax, commonly referred to as the Cadillac Tax, places a 40 percent tax on high-quality health care plans. This tax will only hurt working men and women who will see their premiums rise as costs are passed down the line. Senators on both sides of the aisle are doing the right thing and fighting to repeal this harmful tax on good health care plans," Hoffa said...

Teamsters shift from fighting pension cuts to finding a resolution  Press-Gazette  ...Green Bay area retired Teamsters have shifted their efforts from fighting pension cuts to finding a solution that could lay the foundation for national pension reform. The Wisconsin/Green Bay Committee to Protect Pensions spent 2015 and 2016 urging the U.S. Treasury to oppose Central States Pension Fund’s request to slash payouts...

Solidarity

Teamsters Union Stands with Nissan Workers in Mississippi  Teamster.org  ...The Teamsters Union stands in solidarity with over 3,700 Nissan workers in Mississippi who are voting in their election to join the United Auto Workers today and Friday. The workers are organizing in Canton, one of only three nonunion Nissan plants worldwide...

UPS Teamsters

Local 767 Wins Two Major Arbitration Cases Against UPS  Teamster.org  ...What makes the stories of Sister Torres and Brother Farhan so similar is that their terminations were clearly an attempt by the company to crackdown on union activity and the grievance process. "By discharging our sister and brother in these two cases, it was clearly the intent of the company to create a chilling effect among our members who file grievances," said John Shorts, President of Local 767...

Teamsters Local 710 Secures UPS Freight Member’s Rightful Wages, Back Pay  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters Local 710 UPS Freight Business Agents Ted Barnhart and John “Shaggy” Rule settled a grievance after it was deadlocked at the National Panel last month, securing a substantial pay increase and three-and-a-half months of back pay for Louis Bustamantez, a dockworker in Franklin Park, Ill. Prior to going to arbitration, the company offered to come to a resolution with the union...

A Year Ahead of UPS Contract Expiration, Teamsters Local 396 Stands United for a Strong Contract in 2018  Medium  ...Monday marked exactly one year before the expiration of our contract with UPS. Once again, it will take the strength and commitment of our membership in Local 396 to win a strong contract that ensures good wages, job security, health insurance, and a solid retirement plan... 

 

GLOBAL LABOR & TRADE

British Airways cabin crew extend strike for further two weeks  The Guardian  ...British Airways cabin crew will strike for a further two weeks in August, including over the bank holiday weekend, in a long-running dispute over pay and staff sanctions. Unite, Britain’s biggest union, said the strike action would go ahead unless a deal was reached with BA on wages and on the sanctioning of striking workers...

Cambodia Brewery Workers Win Suit, Charge Intimidation  Solidarity Center  ...A $60,000 claim by Cambodia’s largest brewer against the Cambodian Food and Service Workers Federation (CFSWF) and its leader, Sar Mora, was dismissed this week by the Cambodian Provincial Court in Sihanoukville, putting an end to what the union alleges is the latest volley in the company’s years-long campaign to intimidate workers...

New Zealand: supermarket distribution workers strike for better conditions  NZ Stuff  ...Foodstuffs distribution temporary workers have gone on a seven day strike for better work conditions. More than 60 workers at a chilled and frozen food distribution centre in South Auckland are calling on Foodstuffs, which owns Pak 'n Save and New World supermarkets, to provide better working conditions...

Bank of England maintenance, security, and hospitality workers to go on strike  Business Insider  ...Bank of England workers are set to go on strike Tuesday for the first time in 50 years. Last-ditch talks on Monday failed to avert the three-day strike over what they say was a pay offer that was below the inflation rate. Members of the Unite union blamed Bank of England Governor Mark Carney for the breakdown in talks...

Mexico to host second round of NAFTA talks in September: minister  Reuters  ...Mexico will host the second round of talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) around Sept. 10, Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo told reporters on Wednesday. The talks between Canada, Mexico and the United States are due to start in Washington on Aug. 16...

NAFTA schedule: A cabinet dinner to launch seven rounds of trade talks  National Post  ...A high-level dinner of cabinet members from Canada, the U.S. and Mexico will mark the start of NAFTA negotiations this month, followed by a seven-course diet of negotiating rounds crammed in rapid succession. Sources say the schedule will then feature seven rounds of talks by the end of the year, held at a far more frenzied pace than is the norm for international trade discussions...

Mexico sets out NAFTA goals ahead of re-negotiation talks: document  Reuters  ...Mexico has set out its goals for an upcoming re-negotiation of the NAFTA trade accord, according to a document seen by Reuters on Tuesday, prioritizing free access for goods and services, greater labor market integration and a strengthening of energy security...

 

STATE & LIVING WAGE BATTLES 

Massachusetts: proposed ballot question would expand paid leave   WWLP  ...1.2 million workers in Massachusetts risk losing their jobs if they take time off from work to care for a sick family member or a new child. Lawmakers are considering several bills to give workers paid family and medical leave, but a grassroots coalition plans to take this issue directly to voters on the 2018 ballot...

Missouri: court sides with unions in `right to work' dispute  Post-Dispatch  ...A union-led attempt to dump Missouri’s new “right to work” law scored a victory in court last week. The Missouri Court of Appeals Western District overturned a lower court decision that said the language of a proposed ballot initiative seeking to nix the new law was unfair and insufficient. At issue is a controversial law that bans the collection of union dues as a condition of employment...

Vermont Summer Study Committee Will Heat Up Debate Over $15 Minimum Wage  VPR  ...Supporters of a bill that would raise the minimum wage in Vermont to $15 an hour hope a new summer study committee will lay the groundwork for passage in 2018. It’s been three years since Vermont last increased the minimum wage and, at $10 an hour, the state already has one of the higher minimum wages in the U.S...

Missouri: NAACP warns people of color about traveling to state  WCPO  ...The advisory was issued after Senate Bill 43 -- which makes it more difficult for employees to prove their protected class, like race or gender, directly led to unlawful discrimination -- passed through the Missouri Legislature in June. Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens signed it into law soon after. Greitens and other supporters of the bill have said it puts Missouri's standards for lawsuits in line with other states...

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s $3 billion fraud  Think Progress  ...Walker, a self-proclaimed champion of the free market, is pushing a breathtaking giveaway to a foreign company. The governor announced he was giving $3 billion in taxpayer money to a Taiwanese electronics manufacturer, Foxconn. The company is best known for making component parts for the iPhone and other Apple products. The stunning deal is 50 times larger than any previous public incentive package...

California officials say immigration agents showed up at labor dispute proceedings  Los Angeles Times  ...Federal immigration agents have shown up twice at California labor dispute proceedings to apprehend undocumented workers, in what state officials believe may be cases of employer retaliation. State officials sent a memo in July instructing staff members to refuse entry to ICE agents who visit its offices to apprehend immigrants who are in the country without authorization...

New York recovers $5.3M from deadbeat public-works project employers  Daily News  ...The state during the first half of 2017 recovered a combined $5.3 million that thousands of employees on public works projects were cheated out of by their private employers, the Daily News has learned. Not only did the 2,285 workers get paid the money they were owed after the state intervened, but 34 individuals and companies that stiffed them are barred from working on any state projects...

Alabama restored voting rights to thousands of former felons, but they may never know  Think Progress  ...Alabama does not have to notify tens of thousands of former felons that they recently regained the right to vote, a federal judge ruled Friday. The judge also found that the state does not have to automatically restore voting rights to citizens who tried to register but were denied before the state’s law regarding felon disenfranchisement changed this year...

 

U.S. LABOR 

Nissan attacked for one of 'nastiest anti-union campaigns' in modern US history  The Guardian  ...Days before a potentially historic union vote at the Nissan plant in Canton, Mississippi, the car company has been accused of running one of the “nastiest anti-union campaigns in the modern history of the American labour movement”. The vote, a fiercely contested effort by the UAW to represent a foreign automaker’s US plant, is planned for Thursday and Friday...

Nissan Launches Anti-Union Blitz Ahead Of Pivotal UAW Election  Huffington Post  ...Last week, managers at the Nissan manufacturing plant in Canton, Mississippi, pulled workers off the floor and into large group meetings. Using slides to make their case, they tried to show employees all the bad things that can happen after unionizing. If the UAW manages to win a majority at the Canton facility, it will give the Detroit-based union a few thousand new members and a strong toehold in the Southern auto industry...

NLRB lodges charge at Nissan ahead of union vote  USA Today  ...With a union election scheduled this week, the National Labor Relations Board is charging that Nissan violated workers’ rights at its Mississippi plant by engaging in anti-union activity. The board alleges a supervisor acted illegally on March 30...

Nearly 2,000 mechanics strike at Chicago-area car dealerships  ABC  ...About 2,000 auto mechanics went on strike Tuesday at 130 new car dealerships across the Chicago area. The work stoppage could cause headaches for car owners in need of a tuneup. Negotiations were ongoing Monday afternoon ahead of a midnight deadline to agree on a three-year contract for the Automobile Mechanics' Local 701 and the Chicago Automobile Trade Association...

Goodyear, union reach tentative labour agreement for five US plants  Tyre Press  ...A tentative agreement has been reached on a new five-year master labour contract covering almost 7,000 workers at five Goodyear Tire & Rubber plants in the USA. The agreement between the tire maker and the United Steelworkers (USW) union covers plants in Akron (Ohio), Danville (Virginia), Fayetteville (North Carolina), Gadsden (Alabama) and Topeka (Kansas)...

Trump is about to make America much crueler to unionized workers  Think Progress  ...The NLRB is still controlled by Democrats. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) began the process of confirming the first of Trump’s two nominees to the NLRB on Monday. When both nominees sit on the Board, a swift rollback of union rights is likely...

500 Workers Staffing Facebook’s Cafeteria Just Voted to Unionize  The Nation  ... In the cafeterias and shuttle vans of Technotopia, workers on the margins of the tech boom are organizing—and the labor momentum is going viral. Five hundred workers just voted to unionize at Facebook’s cafeteria contractor, Flagship, which represents some 10 percent of the total food-service workforce in Silicon Valley...

Senators pressure retailers to root out “shameful” labor abuse of truckers  USA Today  ...A group of high-profile Democratic Senators, led by Sherrod Brown of Ohio, wrote letters to the nation’s top retail CEOs Monday, demanding they crack down on trucking companies that turned their workers into modern-day indentured servants. The call to action comes in response to a yearlong USA TODAY Network investigation...

The Wealth Gap in the U.S. Is Worse Than In Russia or Iran  Fortune  ...According to New York Times columnist David Brooks, socioeconomic segregation is ruining America. "Housing and construction rules that keep the poor and less educated away from places with good schools and good job opportunities...have a devastating effect on economic growth nationwide," Brooks wrote in a much-derided July 11 column...

Apprentices Deserve More Than Trump’s Plan  (opinion) Jobs with Justice  ...Trump’s proposal fails greatly on those counts. Trump’s apprenticeship program could lead to increased exploitation of apprentices, halt progress for women and people of color to move into good careers in construction and other sectors where they are underrepresented, and harm the futures of working people setting their sights on a sustainable career path...

 

SOCIAL JUSTICE & OTHER NEWS 

John Kelly, Asserting Authority, Fires Anthony Scaramucci  New York Times  ...John F. Kelly, President Trump’s new chief of staff, firmly asserted his authority on his first day in the White House on Monday, telling aides he will impose military discipline on a free-for-all West Wing, and he underscored his intent by firing Anthony Scaramucci, the bombastic communications director, 10 days after he was hired.

Donald Trump Is Serious When He “Jokes” About Police Brutality  The New Yorker  ...Trump has been making inflammatory statements since literally the first day of his life as a politician, and in that time a life cycle of Trumpian outrages has become apparent. Whenever his words provoke the most sustained backlash the tendency is to explain them away as an attempt at humor...

Trump says the proposed immigration bill will raise wages for Americans. It won’t.  Washington Post  ..President Trump announced Wednesday in a joint statement with Sens. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) that he would like to dramatically slash legal — not illegal — immigration. Speaking in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Trump endorsed the senators’ proposed Raise Act, promising it will raise wages for American-born workers. It won’t...

Stephen Miller attacks Statue of Liberty poem, echoing popular white nationalist talking point  Think Progress  ...The Trump administration’s new immigration bill, as CNN’s Jim Acosta noted, favors “highly-skilled,” English-speaking applicants. Miller became angry, replying that the sonnet on the Statue of Liberty was “added later” and therefore, does not reflect American values towards immigrants. While the argument surprised many observers, it is a popular refrain among white nationalists...

Justice Dept. to Take On Affirmative Action in College Admissions  New York Times  ...The Trump administration is preparing to redirect resources of the Justice Department’s civil rights division toward investigating and suing universities over affirmative action admissions policies deemed to discriminate against white applicants...

Trump’s transgender military ban isn’t going over very well with Americans  Think Progress  ...Far more U.S. citizens think transgender service members should be allowed in the army than do not, according to a new survey. When asked if they agreed with the statement, “transgender people should be allowed to serve in the military,” 58 percent of respondents concurred, a new Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll revealed...

Sanders says he's "absolutely" introducing single-payer bill after GOP fails to repeal Obamacare  Newsweek  ...Vermont Independent Senator Bernie Sanders said Sunday he would “absolutely” introduce a single-payer healthcare bill following failed Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare. “Absolutely, of course we are,” Sanders told CNN’s Jake Tapper Sunday. “We’re just tweaking the final points of the bill”...

Koch network teaming up with Trump officials for tax-reform event  The Hill  ...Trump administration officials are set to make the case for tax reform at an event Monday hosted by groups in the Koch brothers' network. The event will be an opportunity for the White House and the Koch network to argue the benefits of a tax-code rewrite on the heels of the White House and congressional GOP leaders on Thursday releasing principles for overhauling the tax code...

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