News and Press

Union sues for bus driver safety

As reported in the last issue of this paper, Local 533 filed a lawsuit against Keolis Transit for not mandating that bus customers wear masks to ensure the safety of both drivers and passengers. This failure has resulted in more than two dozen drivers and some support workers contracting COVID-19 over the last several months.

“Social distancing seems to be a thing of the past,” said Local 533 President Gary Watson. “Some buses pack in passengers like sardines at peak hours but the foreign-owned management contractor will not dispatch additional vehicles to relieve overcrowding.

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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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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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