March 17, 2015: Richard Mark, who served as the independent Election Supervisor in the 2006 and 2011 IBT elections, will again supervise the 2015-2016 elections of delegates from all local unions to the IBT Convention, and the IBT Election of officers in 2016.
Mark will hire a national staff to handle the election, communicate with members, and investigate all protests filed. We expect that the Election Rules will issue by May. The Rules will be very similar to the 2010-2011 Rules, with minor changes, mainly in dates and housekeeping. There will be a comment period after the proposed Rules are issued.
Unlike local union officer elections, the Rules, protests and appeals are not handled by incumbent union officials, but by the Election Supervisor.
An Election Appeals Master will be appointed as well (jointly appointed by the U.S. Attorney and the IBT) to settle any appeals of protest decisions made by the Election Supervisor.
The Election Agreement and Order signed by Judge Loretta Preska details these matters.
By June we expect the period of Petitioning to Accredit Candidates will be opened up.
Wisconsin is now the 25th state to adopt a so-called “right-to-work” law, which allows workers to benefit from collective bargaining without having to pay for it.
It joins Michigan and Indiana, which both adopted right to work in 2012. Similar initiatives, or variants, are spreading to Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and West Virginia—and the National Right to Work Committee and the American Legislative Exchange Council probably have a well-developed list of additional targets.
Click here to read more at Labor Notes.Issues: Labor Movement
March 17, 2014: On Saturday, March 14, New York Local 804 President Tim Sylvester announced he’s running for Teamster General President.
Local 89 President Fred Zuckerman joined him and more than 200 Teamsters from across the region to launch Teamsters United, a coalition of officers and members committed to winning new Teamster leadership in 2016.
“It’s great to see people supporting a strong candidate like Tim Sylvester,” said Local 384 member Scott Black, who travelled in from Philadelphia to be at the meeting. “Our union needs new leadership that will be proactive and address problems, instead of sitting back in Washington D.C.”
Sylvester and Zuckerman then made it up to Worcester, Mass. the following day for another energized meeting with New England Teamsters.
Momentum is already building. Find out more about Teamsters United at www.teamstersunited.org
Issues: Local Union Reform
The late February snow fell lazily on several thousand Wisconsin union members as they gathered on the steps of the capitol building in Madison to protest what picket signs denounced as “the war on workers.” The scene was a smaller replay of the protest four years ago when tens of thousands assembled to oppose Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s Act 10. Despite a broad, fervent uprising, that act passed and stripped public employees of their collective bargaining rights.
This time, even the protesters saw little hope of defeating the latest attack by Walker and Republican legislators. The deceptively named “right-to-work” law, aimed primarily at private-sector unions, prohibits labor contracts from requiring all employees to pay their share of union dues. While the Right denounces such payments as “forced unionism,” labor says that it’s only fair for all workers to chip in, because they all benefit from the union’s work.
Click here to read more.Issues: Labor Movement
March 16, 2015: On March 13, FedEx drivers at the Stockton terminal voted 33-12 to join the Teamsters Union – the fourth FedEx terminal to say Yes to going union. Congrats to the new FedEx Teamsters and to Local 439 and the members who helped make it happen.
FedEx management crows about the terminals which have voted against the union, after heavy management propaganda, threats and an 80c raise, which only happened because of the employees’ interest in our union.
In November, 222 drivers at FedEx Freight in Charlotte NC voted to join Teamsters Local 71. In October, 113 drivers at FedEx Freight in South Brunswick NJ joined Teamsters Local and 47 drivers in Croydon Pa voted to join Teamsters Local 107 in Philadelphia. The drive continues at several other locals.
The drive – organized by a number of locals – shows the potential to build Teamster power in trucking. The International union should put its full resources behind the organizing and drive this campaign to victory.
Local 439 Ex-Officers Charged
Local 439 won the drive as it shakes off the history of two former officers who were charged by the Independent Review Board (IRB) on February 27 with a pattern of embezzlement, fraud and receiving a motorcycle from an employer. Former Secretary Treasurer Sam Rosas and former president Armando Alonzo were charged. You can read a report and the full charges.Issues: Labor Movement
March 13, 2015: Bob Amsden, a retired Local 200 Teamster, isn’t sitting by while Central States ponders pension cuts. He got involved in forming the Wisconsin Committee to Protect Pensions and helped to organize a recent Milwaukee meeting that attracted over 60 retirees, spouses, and active Teamsters. Amsden recently spoke with a reporter from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The story ended up being a front page article.
Many active and retired Teamsters don’t know of the pending benefit cuts. You can help inform the thousands that may face cuts in the coming months. Contact local newspapers and reporters. Tell them the importance of this story. Write a letter to the editor. Use the local media to help spread the news.Issues: Pension and Benefits
UPS is abandoning the slogan "We Love Logistics" in favor of "United Problem Solvers" in a new advertising campaign to highlight its other services.
The message, according to UPS, communicates the company’s problem-solving ability for everyone from small businesses to the largest global firms.
"Our employees solve customer problems by using the best mix of proven analysis methods, innovative technologies and the company's extensive global transportation network. We not only move goods through all aspects of the supply chain, we also help our customers approach their business problems to uncover new top line and bottom line opportunities," Alan Gershenhorn, executive vice president and chief commercial officer, said in a statement.
“We're transforming UPS from a logistics provider to a full-service partner that offers world-class expertise and capabilities that help customers increase revenue, improve cash flow, minimize lead time and reduce cost," he said.
The campaign is debuting in media surrounding the NCAA basketball tournament. The company is the official logistics partner of the NCAA.
The ads will then appear in international markets including, China, Germany, Mexico and the United Kingdom.
"The new United Problem Solvers campaign illustrates how our more than 400,000 employees approach problems with expertise and intense commitment to help customers," Gershenhorn said. "Our essential message is to invite customers to challenge us with their business problems. We are confident that we can offer insights that will help them be more successful."UPS
March 12, 2015: When Teamster Local 89 investigated and found out that Holland was bringing in low-paid contractors to do city delivery work, they took creative action – and in less than one hour, YRCW management decided the contractors would leave empty.
The IBT Freight Division may want to pay attention. Holland was violating the contract, and grievances could have been filed, but quick creative action worked better.
Local 89, led by president Fred Zuckerman, used “area standards picketing” – a legal tactic, which is not a strike, but a picket line alerting workers and the public that wages are being paid on the premises under the area standard wage.
Then Teamster members were protected from crossing the line. They were not on strike, but they had a right to respect a legal picket line.
Creativity. Bold action. Solidarity. These are some of the ingredients we need to rebuild Teamster power. Thanks, Local 89, for the lesson.Issues: Labor Movement
March 12, 2015: The Independent Review Board (IRB) has charged the former leaders of Stockton California Local 439 with a pattern of embezzlement, fraud and receiving a motorcycle from an employer. Former Secretary Treasurer Sam Rosas and former president Armando Alonzo were charged.
The IRB’s 117-page report, issued February 27, is available here.
Both Rosas and Alonzo were narrowly voted out of office in December, and the newly-elected officers have taken the reins of the 4500 member local. So Rosas and Alonzo no longer hold union positions.
They are charged with a long list of financial shenanigans, including causing the union to pay for numerous meals, Oakland Raiders tickets, hotel rooms, bar bills, gift cards, liquor, electronics and more when there were no union records and/or no union purpose. Many expenses involved a spouse or friends, and meals and drinks at local restaurants. Some involved a gift of money and a Hawaiian vacation for a retired business agent, at union expense. The charges detail a pattern going back at least until 2008 .
Rosas is charged with receiving an expensive motorcycle from the owner of “Stars and Stripes” at half price. Rosas caused the union to do some $314,000 worth of business with Stars and Stripes, which provided the union with beer mugs, T-shirts and other paraphernalia. In 2011, an election year in Local 439 and in the IBT, with Rosas backing Hoffa, the local did a huge business in T-shirts, far more than 2010 or 2012.
The charges were referred by the IRB to IBT president James Hoffa. Rosas has been a close associate of Rome Aloise, the head the Joint Council 7 and an International vice president. Aloise issued campaign material last October to help Rosas in his local election; it was illegally issued on Joint Council 7 stationery.
Now, it is clear that Aloise and Hoffa will drop their friend Rosas. Loyalty flows only uphill in those circles.Issues: Local Union Reform Files E-7000_D033938.pdf
On Monday, March 9th, the Industrial Worker of the World Union - Montreal (IWW / SITT), as well as several citizens, occupied Quebec's Minister of Family and Seniors' office building. This action is part of the movement against austerity measures and in our campaign for a social strike on May 1, 2015.
Today, many workers are directly confronted with the effects of budget cuts to health services, to municipal employees, to firemen and firewomen, to postal workers, to students, to workers in the private sector... Yet, resistance is organizing itself everywhere. We will not let different governments (whether conservative or liberal) and the bosses impose their anti-social measures on us. The time of a minority enriching itself on the back of an impoverished majority is finished.against austerity measures and in our campaign for a social strike on May 1, 2015.