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Episode 162: The Great Chicago Blitz of 2017

Hear how Teamsters at the local, regional and international level joined together in the Chicagoland region late last year as part of a weeklong organizing “blitz” that challenged logistics companies XPO and ITS ConGlobal to recognize unionization efforts by their workers. Plus, legendary country music venue the Grand Ole Opry’s union ties.

Warehouse workers, drivers, and other members of Teamsters Local 202 at Hunts Point Produce Market voted unanimously on Saturday to reject management’s contract offer and authorize a strike. The market provides most of the fruit and vegetables sold and served at restaurants and stores in the New York City region.

Companies are shipping more items by plane to meet customers’ rising expectations for rapid delivery, prompting a scramble for cargo space that has sent airfreight rates soaring and pushed Amazon.comInc. and others into the airline business.

Global airfreight traffic climbed almost 9% year-over-year in November, the start of the peak shipping season, and rates for airfreight were up 17% annually for the month, the biggest price increase since the aftermath of the financial crisis, according to cargo data provider WorldACD.

 

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico — Raúl García Miranda wants Carlos Flores’s job. Mr. Flores doesn’t think he deserves it.

The two men haul goods that travel from Mexico into the United States. Both come from a Mexican border town infested with drug cartels. But Mr. Flores got out.

He became a United States citizen, giving him the right to drive through the American heartland and earn good money delivering washing machines and broccoli sent from Mexico. Mr. Miranda, a Mexican national, doesn’t have that option. He can make only short trips, back and forth across the border, from a lot on the southern side to truck lots 24 miles to the north.

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