NYC Horse Carriage Campaign

WHEREAS, in December 2008, the Teamsters recognized the need to organize the New York City carriage industry in order to provide fair wages, political representation and to secure the long-term future of the industry; and

WHEREAS, in March 2010, Intro 35A was passed in the NYC City Council, creating higher standards in horse care throughout the industry while also providing the industry with its first wage increase in 21 years; and

WHEREAS, simultaneously, the Teamsters were able to neutralize Intro 86 and Intro 92, both of which called for a ban on the industry; and

WHEREAS, the election of Bill de Blasio as Mayor of the City of New York posed an immediate threat to the survival of the industry and as a result the IBT, Joint Council 16 and Local 553 collectively made the carriage industry issue a top priority; and

WHEREAS, the Teamster Campaign to Save the NYC Carriage Industry consisted of four sections: lobbying, media, organizing and grassroots; and

WHEREAS, the Teamster lobbying campaign consisted of:

  • Screening all current and future city and state politicians on their views of the carriage industry;
  • Forming internal political action committees;
  • Attending and hosting political networking events with different city and state politicians; and
  • Negotiating in good faith with the city to preserve the long- term future of the carriage industry; and

WHEREAS, the Teamster media campaign consisted of press  releases, press conferences, international and national TV and radio shows, a letter writing campaign; and attending public events like parades and political rallies; and

WHEREAS, the Teamster organizing campaign consisted of:

  • Aligning with different labor unions;
  • Partnering with community groups and organizations; and
  • Uniting with different equine and veterinarian associations; and

WHEREAS, Teamster grassroots campaign consisted of:

  • Leveraging social media;
  • Positive outreach within communities; and
  • Building an international support base; and

WHEREAS, all four campaigns successfully promoted the high standards  of horsemanship which the Teamsters have always valued and highlighted the hard working brothers and sisters of Local 553; and

WHEREAS, after successfully campaigning for numerous years in support of the NYC carriage industry, the Teamsters have earned the support of the NYC Council and the public, and as a result, the efforts to ban or negatively impact the industry have been defeated.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED at this 29th International Convention that all Teamsters should use all of its partners to continue to support our efforts to preserve and protect the NYC carriage industry; and

FINALLY, BE IT RESOLVED that the IBT renew the commitment it made at the 1916 Convention that the horse should always be the heart of the Union. May it be so for the next 100 years as well!