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Started by Joe Balkis Jan 1, 2012.
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New York, NY – In the wake of a walkout of UPS drivers on Feb. 26, at the Queens hub in New York City, UPS reportedly issued ‘working discharges’ today, March 6, to 249 workers who participated in the strike.
After the dispute protesting the company’s abuse of workers, including selectively targeting union fighters, UPS ratcheted up tensions to dangerous levels by issuing working terminations. This constitutes a serious threat to the livelihoods of hundreds of workers providing for families and their children.
Currently, negotiations to resolve the dispute continue between the leadership of Local 804 and UPS management. Local 804 enjoys wide support as President Tim Sylvester and his leadership team rebuilt 804 into a militant rank-and-file union in the tradition of Ron Carey over the past few years.
Outrage spread quickly across the country as many Teamsters involved in the Vote No on the UPS contract movement heard the news. Hundreds of comments poured in on the group’s facebook page pledging solidarity with Local 804 and the drivers. With several supplements still outstanding, and dissatisfaction among many UPS workers over the proposed national contract, many workers expect such harsh retaliation by UPS could spark a national pushback at Big Brown.
Several 804 members, who asked to remain anonymous to avoid retaliation, reflected this as they went so far as to declare their willingness to walk out and organize a local-wide strike if the company refused to back down and pressed firing the 249 drivers. “I will risk my job and walk, and get as many as I can to follow me if those unfair discharges are upheld,” said one UPS worker.
“If they fire our brothers and sisters, we are going to fight back and do whatever is necessary. This is a fighting union and UPS better realize that if New York City stands up, other locals will follow,” said a part-time 804 member.
United Parcel Service plans to grow in rival FedEx’s back yard by nearly doubling sorting capacity at Memphis International Airport.
Airport officials who have been in negotiations with UPS expect the Atlanta-based company to spend more than $25 million and hire well in excess of 100 new employees for an expanded sorting facility. It serves part of UPS’ Memphis ground delivery fleet and two flights a day connecting Memphis with Louisville, Ky., home of UPS Worldport.
UPS’ expansion is a sign of continued strength in cargo traffic at Memphis despite woeful erosion of passenger service, which has dropped from about 300 daily flights in 2000 to about 100.
Cargo, nearly all of it carried by FedEx, is anchoring the Memphis airport’s finances while officials campaign to attract new passenger service to fill a void left by Delta Air Lines. Delta dropped to 64 flights on peak days and stopped calling Memphis a hub on Sept. 3.
Earlier this year, Pinnacle Airlines, once headquartered in Memphis, moved to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after emerging from bankruptcy under new ownership by Delta and with a new name, Endeavor.
“Our success on the cargo side will help us as we continue our relentless quest for affordable, frequent passenger service,” Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority chairman Jack Sammons said.
Airport chief executive officer Larry Cox said a larger UPS presence “is good for Memphis companies. Competition is always good, and they’re fierce competitors.”
“Memphis is such an important logistics hub, they have to be as strong as they possibly can here,” Cox added.
FedEx had nothing to say about the UPS move.
While it would substantially increase UPS’ footprint, the project won’t challenge FedEx’s dominance at Memphis, the world’s second-busiest air cargo hub behind Hong Kong.
The FedEx Express world hub handles more than 99 percent of airfreight moving through the airport. UPS is a far distant second.
The airport authority on Thursday approved leasing UPS an additional 1,171,586 square feet and an option to lease another million square feet.
Cargo remains a bright spot in airport finances as Delta ramps down, shops and restaurants close in the terminal building, and gates stand empty.
Airlines currently lease 41 of the airport’s 78 gates.
The Hoffa-Hall administration is trying to intimidate UPS Teamsters with phony strike votes. But the scare tactics aren’t working.
Last Friday, UPS Teamsters in Local 710 Voted No by 73% to reject a weak contract, which was patterned after the national agreement. The Local 710 ballot stated it was a strike authorization vote. But there will not be any strike. Why?
Because the “strike vote” was only a scare tactic to try to coerce members into accepting a contract they didn’t want. Hoffa and Hall have threatened to use the same scare tactics on the next contract vote in Philadelphia and in Western Pennsylvania.
UPS wants no part of a strike especially coming on the heels of the company’s Christmas season PR problems.
Any strike would be devastating to UPS. Brown has an integrated delivery network and cannot function without the packages that go through Chicago, the Louisville Worldport hub or the Philadelphia Airport Hub.
This gives our union leverage. But instead of using a strike threat against the company, Hoffa and Hall are turning it around as a scare tactic against the members.
The scare tactic didn’t work with the 6,000 members of Local 710, across Illinois, Northern Indiana, and Davenport, Iowa. Now will Hoffa and Hall try the same tactic in Pennsylvania?
Western Pa, Philadelphia, Louisville to Meet
Ken Hall has directed the union negotiating committees Western Pa, Philadelphia and Louisville to meet in Ft. Lauderdale during the National Grievance Panel meetings next week to discuss their unresolved supplements or rider, and their outstanding issues.
It’s time for Hall to back up these Teamsters, instead of continuing to use lies and scare tactics against them.
New York, NY - Hundreds of UPS drivers and warehouse workers walked off the job, Feb. 26, at the Queens hub in New York City.
The UPS workers from Teamsters Local 804, a local led by rank-and-file reformers, called an impromptu wildcat action to fight back against the unjust firing of a driver and vocal Teamster fighter. UPS management in New York resorts to firing workers on trumped up and nebulous charges in an attempt to weaken the union. The company abuses the grievance procedure to delay worker reinstatement and back wages in these cases of unjust firings, attempting to ‘starve’ workers who stand up for their rights on the job into submission.
The strategy backfired. Workers fought back to defend the union fighter who UPS unjustly fired. Hundreds stormed out of the building shouting “Stop the war on workers!” and “Shut down big brown!” The workers held an impromptu picket, gave speeches and chanted for the vast majority of the day.
A striker, who asked to remain anonymous to avoid retaliation, said, “We’re sick of the company’s harassment. They fire people with families and kids for no reason. It’s just wrong.” The strike demonstrated the union spirit of “an injury to one, is an injury to all!”
The strike inspired Teamsters from hubs in the other boroughs. Workers from the 43rd Street hub in Manhattan, as well as the Bronx hub, said many plan to organize support for the brave strikers who stood up to management and want to send a strong message that any further firings or retaliations will be met by overwhelming solidarity and unity.
Vote No campaigning in Rockford!
Local 710/ups contract survey sheet
A federal judge in Chicago Feb. 11 ruled that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission can pursue its claim challenging United Parcel Service Inc.'s policy of discharging employees who can't return to work after 12 months of leave, finding that the rule may be an unlawful qualification standard under the Americans with Disabilities Act (EEOC v. UPS, Inc., 2014 BL 35887, N.D. Ill., No. 1:09-cv-05291, 2/11/14).
February 21, 2014: Get the latest news on the third vote on the Ohio Rider, Hoffa-Hall threats against UPSers in Philadelphia and Western PA, the upcoming national grievance panel and the information brownout on the IBT-UPS pension.
UPS Bargaining: Brownout and Threats
The information brownout has reached a new low. UPS Teamsters in Ohio, who have rejected their rider twice, will get a third ballot mailed to them on February 27, without any input or even information about changes to UPS’s offer.
Meanwhile, Hoffa and Hall are using threats and rumors to try to get Teamsters in Western Pennsylvania and Philadelphia to accept their supplements, which members have decisively rejected twice.
Hall’s office is spreading the word that the third vote may be a strike vote, and if members vote to strike, the IBT will not sanction extending picket lines beyond Pennsylvania.
Click here to read more.
UPS National Grievance Panel Set for March
The UPS National Grievance panel will meet in Fort Lauderdale, March 3-6.
The National Grievance Panel Docket is a whopping 116 pages. Subcontracting, the failure of UPS to post and replace full-time 22.3 jobs, and supervisors working are some of the most common violations cited.
UPS Pension Limbo Continues
Teamsters who are ready to retire are being held hostage by UPS and the Hoffa-Hall administration.
One of the selling points of the UPS contract was that 50,000 full-time UPSers who get a substandard pension from the IBT-UPS Pension Plan would get a $200 increase, retroactive to August 1.
But UPS Teamsters like Stevie Thomas, who call the IBT- UPS Pension Plan about retiring are being told a different story. Plan reps are still telling members that they have to wait until after the contract is ratified to get the pension increase.
Click here to read more about why they won't help Stevie retire.
- See more at: http://www.tdu.org/news/ups-update#sthash.4hfiyf4x.dpuf
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