Author: Joint Council 7

Voting: The most important thing you can do as a Teamster!

Most of you are registered to vote and you vote in every election. Thank you.

Unfortunately, far too many Teamsters just don’t vote. What will it take to get everyone registered and voting this year, which may be the most important election of our lifetime?

As a union, we do most of our work directly with our employers, negotiating and enforcing contracts. But I can’t emphasize enough the importance of the electoral process to our long-term survival and effectiveness.

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Local 665 assists with vehicles bound for Haiti

Officers and members of Local 665 joined a San Francisco Supervisor in leading a convoy of desperately needed vehicles to be used by school children in the country of Haiti.

Working with Those Angels Inc. and Teamster-endorsed Supervisor Ahsha Safai, Local 665 Secretary-Treasurer Tony Delorio and Recording Secretary Juan Gallo assembled volunteer members to deliver three donated AC Transit buses and one donated ambulance to Florida for shipment to a school in Carrefour,

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Ready Mix members ratify lucrative contract extension

On July 18, the Northern California Ready Mix drivers working for Cemex and Central Concrete, who are members of Local 853 and 315, overwhelmingly ratified their contract extension by mail ballot. This contract impacts 600 members at facilities across the Greater Bay Area.

“Given the current circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting inability to do most things in person, full-blown negotiations would have taken months and would have put areas of our contract at potential risk,” said Local 853 Principal Officer Rome Aloise.

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Contracts settled during pandemic

The Local 315 members employed at Mt. Diablo Resource Recovery recently ratified contracts with two of their units—Mt. Diablo Recycling Center and Recycling Center & Transfer Station. “Negotiating during the pandemic had its challenges,” says Business Rep David Rodriguez, “but with the perseverance of the Local and its bargaining committee, we were able to secure a five-year contract with the biggest pension increases our members have seen, great wages, and full maintenance of benefits for their health and welfare.”

Rodriguez wanted to thank the members for their patience and understanding during the negotiations.

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Staying Sober and Sane During COVID

Staying sober can be a daunting task, one that is best addressed through a strong support network.

For those who are in early recovery, long-term recovery, and even people who do not have a substance abuse problem, the COVID epidemic has affected almost every aspect of our daily lives. For almost all of us, it has increased our stress levels and required adjustments.

To support recovery from substance abuse during these unprecedented times,

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Workers deemed “essential” during pandemic need hazard pay

Local 856 won hazard pay for more than 3,000 members working in its Food Processing Division during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic—recognizing the workers who have kept the nation’s food supply functioning and the inherent dangers they have faced just by reporting to work each day.

Ashley Alvarado, Director of the Local 856 Food Processing Division, said that despite no legal means to require the employer to provide additional compensation, the Local had secured hazard pay for members at Pacific Coast Producers plants in Lodi,

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Local sues over Washoe Bus System COVID-19 dangers

On September 11, Local 533 took legal action in the federal court system, filing for injunctive relief and fast-track arbitration to compel the Washoe County Regional Transportation bus system to enforce Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak’s (D) mask mandate.

“This is an extreme measure because this is an extreme emergency and no one has responded all year,” said Teamsters Local 533 President Gary Watson.

“Our patience evaporated when we learned that a passenger was refused boarding because his pants were down but maskless passengers were allowed on the bus,” Watson said.

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Trump NLRB destroys historic protections for workers engaged in union activities

It can be discouraging to keep track of the Trump NLRB’s rollback of worker rights, but it’s important for unions and their members to stay abreast of the shifting legal landscape. One recent setback alters the decades-old rules for employees voicing support for organizing, for shop steward conduct in the workplace, and for union member conduct on picket lines.

In recognition of the fact that employee discussions with their fellow workers and with management about union-related issues can become heated,

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Pushing ahead on pressing Teamster issues

The 2019-20 legislative session came to an unceremonious end on August 31. Between the difficulties of holding legislative meetings with COVID-19 restrictions and political infighting, the end of the session devolved into bickering between the parties and between the leaders of the Senate and Assembly. The end result was a failure to act on some pretty important issues. Affordable housing bills and legislation on police reform all died because the politicos couldn’t be civil with each other.

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