Friday, April 13, 2007

NLRA Violations

* Threatening employees with loss of jobs or benefits if they join or vote for a union or engage in protected concerted activity.
* Threatening to close the plant if employees select a union to represent them.
* Questioning employees about their union sympathies or activities in circumstances that tend to interfere with, restrain or coerce employees in the exercise of their rights under the Act.
* Promising benefits to employees to discourage their union support.
* Transferring, laying off, terminating, assigning employees more difficult work tasks, or otherwise punishing employees because they engaged in union or protected concerted activity.
* Transferring, laying off, terminating, assigning employees more difficult work tasks, or otherwise punishing employees because they filed unfair labor practice charges or participated in an investigation conducted by NLRB.

15 comments:

THE PRESS-ENTERPRISE said...

(FEDEX ENDS BIAS SUIT,TO PAY $54.8 MILLION) Fedex corp.,the world's largest air cargo carrier,will pay $54.8 million to end a race-discrimination class action filed on behalf of black and hispanic workers at its subsidiary fedex express. Nine employees representing 20,000 checker-sorters,customer-service agents,freight handlers and other workers filed a group lawsuit in 2003 claiming they were denied promotions and raises equal to white colleagues.The company agreed to provide the employees with the same "opportunities and terms and condition of employment that Fedex affords to similarly situated white employees," according to court papers foled April 9 in San Francisco federal court.

JOE NUNO said...

Board Finds Merit in Claims of Intimidation, Retaliation Against Drivers Seeking Union

April 4, 2007

The National Labor Relations Board Region 1 has issued complaints on multiple unfair labor practice charges against FedEx Corp.’s [NYSE:FDX] FedEx Home Delivery for its actions against workers in Northborough, Massachusetts, who were seeking to join Local 170.

Region 1 Director Rosemary Pye’s consolidated complaint documents a systematic campaign by the company and its managers to threaten, intimidate, punish and economically injure drivers in late 2005 and early 2006, who were trying to form a union. The company is charged with retaliating against drivers for testifying before the NLRB and engaging in other protected union activities. The complaint also charges that the company fabricated evidence of wrongdoing and terminated four drivers for their protected free speech and union support.

“The workers in Northborough faced a series of threats and accusations because they wanted to improve their working lives by joining the Teamsters,” said Michael Hogan, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 170 in Worcester, Massachusetts. “The NLRB complaint exposes the depths FedEx will go to try and keep these drivers down and without a voice to stand up for their rights.”

The NLRB previously charged FedEx Home Delivery for illegal labor practices at its New Jersey terminals in Barrington and West Deptford in 2006. The company settled those charges with that group of drivers for an undisclosed sum.

“FedEx is using every dirty trick in the book to deny workers their right to vote to join the Teamsters Union,” said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. “In FedEx’s quarterly earnings announcement last week, CEO Fred Smith bragged about his company. This week, the company’s real face of threats, forgeries, intimidation and firings has been exposed.”

In a separate hearing on January 23, 2007, concerning the union election by Home Delivery drivers in Wilmington, Massachusetts to join Local 25 in Boston, FedEx manager Donald Clark attacked and insulted a number of FedEx’s immigrant drivers.

Clark singled out each immigrant driver by name and claimed that they lacked comprehension of the English language and could not have knowingly voted for the union on an English-only ballot. FedEx continues to show its contempt for its workers in these disgraceful anti-immigrant accusations. An administrative law judge subsequently dismissed the FedEx objections to the Wilmington elections.

FedEx Ground and FedEx Home Delivery drivers nationwide are challenging the business practices at FedEx. The Region 1 complaint and its charges are only the latest evidence of FedEx’s anti-worker tactics. A hearing before an administrative law judge is scheduled for June 18 to examine these allegations

AM DOCK (FTA) said...

Background

Since 1989, the labor movement has observed Workers’ Memorial Day to remember those who have suffered and died on the job. As we remember those who died in workplace catastrophes, suffered diseases due to exposure to toxic substances or injured in dangerous working conditions, we rededicate ourselves to the fight for safe workplaces. As such, a typical theme for Workers Memorial Day has been "Mourn for the Dead, Fight for the Living."

Decades of struggle by workers and their unions have resulted in significant improvements in working conditions. But the toll of workplace injuries, illnesses and deaths remains enormous. More than 56,000 workers die annually from workplace injuries and illnesses; another 6 million are seriously hurt.

April 28 was chosen because it is the anniversary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and has been recognized as an international day remembrance for dead and injured workers since 1996, when a Global Union delegation lit a commemoration candle to highlight the plight of workers at the United Nations. It has been officially endorsed by the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) and the International Labor Organization (ILO). Eleven countries or territories formally recognize April 28 as a national observance day: Argentina, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, Panama, Peru, Portugal, Spain and Taiwan. A Workers' Memorial Day is observed in nearly 100 countries.

JOANNA NUNO said...

April 13, 2007

In the United States, Canada, and many other countries worldwide, Workers’ Memorial Day is when we remember and honor our fallen brothers and sisters in the labor movement. It is a time to look back and mourn for workers killed and injured on the job, as well as a time to look ahead and rededicate ourselves to the fight for safe workplaces.

Last year, many working men and women throughout the United States and Canada, including Teamster members, were killed and injured on the job due to unsafe conditions. On behalf of all 1.4 million Teamster members, I ask that each of you take a few minutes on April 28 and remember these workers.

Thirty-six years ago, Congress passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act, promising every worker the right to a safe job. Decades of struggle by workers and their unions have resulted in significant improvements in working conditions. Unions have won laws and protections that have made workplaces safer for all workers. Union contracts have also given workers a voice on the job.

Nonetheless, the toll of workplace injuries, illnesses and deaths remains enormous. Hundreds of thousands of workers are injured or killed every year. Highway incidents continue to be the leading cause of on-the-job fatalities, and truck drivers suffer more on-the-job fatalities than any other individual occupation. Ergonomic hazards cripple and injure hundreds of thousands of workers every year and remain the nation’s biggest workplace safety and health problem.

Some groups of workers are particularly at risk, suffering very high rates of job injuries and fatalities. Hispanic and immigrant workers, who often work in the most dangerous jobs and are exploited by employers, have no union protections and are afraid to speak out. Many public sector workers also have no OSHA protection. Hundreds of workers are fired or harassed by their employers each year simply for voicing job-safety concerns or reporting injuries. OSHA, Department of Transportation (DOT), and Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) whistle-blower and anti-retaliation provisions are too weak to provide any real protection to workers who try to exercise their legal rights.

On this Workers’ Memorial Day, we need to join hands to seek stronger safety and health protections and better standards and enforcement. To quote Mother Jones, a small woman but a giant in the American labor movement, “Mourn for the dead and fight like hell for the living.”

RALPH said...

Blow the Whistle on Coke

Tell Coke to Clean Up Its Act

Help blow the whistle on environmental, human rights, and labor rights abuses by Coca-Cola and its largest bottler, CCE! Coke is accused of contaminating water and farmland in India. Coke allegedly allowed death squads in Colombia to murder eight pro-union employees. In the U.S., Coke paid $192 million to settle an employee lawsuit over its widespread racial discrimination. And now Coke’s latest restructuring could destroy good jobs, retirement security, and health care coverage for many Americans

Please sign the appeal letter below and join Coke customers and concerned Americans who are telling Coke to clean up its act!

Thank you.

P.S SEE TEAMSTER WEBSITE FOR SIGNING LETTER.

JOE NUNO said...

I am writing to ask that you stop the Transportation Department's planned experiment to open America's highways to unsafe Mexican trucks. Hearings have been called in the Senate and House, but it is important to back up words with action.

The plan to open America's roads to 100 Mexican trucking companies and an untold number of trucks raises several concerns, including:

* The impact on homeland security initiatives. Will the drivers be checked against the terror watch list or will our borders be open to anyone with a Mexican driver?s license? Will the drivers be required to carry a Mexican passport, as U.S. citizens are required to present their passports when entering the country from Mexico or Canada?

* The DOT has been disingenuous about this pilot program, indicating only a few weeks ago that it was not pursuing this pilot program. What else are they lying about?

* Enforcement of hours of service in Mexico, false log books and fatigued drivers entering the U.S.

* The application of U.S. standards to Mexican drivers including the requirement that U.S. drivers have a Commercial Drivers License, undergo regular physicals and meet minimum age requirements.

* The integrity of drug and alcohol testing. Though testing will be done in U.S. labs, it is unclear who will oversee the collection of random samples creating a system ripe for abuse.

* Enforcement of U.S. wage and hour laws.

* DOT's assertion that all trucks will be inspected by U.S. officials in Mexico and at the U.S. border when less than ten percent of all Mexican trucks entering the commercial zone are inspected now.

Don't let the DOT and the Bush Administration put our families at risk. Stop these dangerous trucks from rolling across our borders before this pilot program starts. Say "No Mexican Trucks" until Americans' safety can be assured.AND REMEMBER GUYS KEEP THE DIRTY SIDE DOWN!GODBLESS AMERICA.

TYRA JOHNSON said...

IN THEIR OWN WORDS


Tyra Johnson
Allied Waste in Lawrenceville, Georgia
Lots of drivers got fired for unfair reasons during our organizing drive. I got suspended for taking my lunch break early one day and talking to coworkers about voting for a union. The company said that my productivity was down and suspended me. But the Teamsters got my job back. We had a lot of politicians on our side; they wrote letters to the company, saying they needed to get me back to work. The company knew it was wrong.

My main reason for wanting a union was health insurance. I have a handicapped daughter. The insurance we had wasn't covering her therapy. (The insurance we have today as Teamsters does cover the therapy.) Others wanted better-running trucks, a voice on the job — so supervisors couldn't just yell whatever they wanted at us — and raises.

I've been a driver since July 2000 here in Lawrenceville. When I started working, BFI owned the facility and you could get out there and work and make money. But ever since Allied took over, it has been different. At first, they listened to what we had to say but they never really made any positive changes.

They said they had to save money to make up what they'd paid for BFI — that meant cutting costs. They cut our insurance and we had longer hours and less pay — we hadn't had a raise for three years before we became Teamsters.

We started organizing at the beginning of '04. The company got its anti-union campaign going, telling people that a union just wanted our dues money and that we'd just end up with a big lawsuit. They held meetings where they showed us videos of other Allied locations, saying that they lost a lot after they voted in the Teamsters, and that this was the possible outcome of having the Teamsters here in Lawrenceville. They said a lot of waste companies went bankrupt because of having a union.

Some people got scared and changed their minds. I just thought, "Bah, humbug — I know what a union is like."

My mom was a union member, she really kept me in touch with what a union meant. As we were organizing, she'd tell me, "Don't you believe what the company is saying." She was a big encouragement.

We had our election in April '04 and we voted to become Teamsters. But it took more than a year to be recognized because the company appealed the victory. We finally got our first contract in December '05, which has made a huge improvement here.

DAVE THOMAS said...

IN THEIR OWN WORDS


Dave Thomas
Allied Waste, Atlanta, Georgia
I have worked for Allied Waste in Atlanta, Georgia, for 15 years. When I was first employed with the company, it was called BFI. Then Allied Waste bought it out. We were promised that nothing would change at the company besides its name but, about a year after Allied Waste took over, our fears came true.

The first thing the company did was start taking away our benefits. Then they began cutting our pay. They also changed our discipline policy. BFI had a three-strike policy, but Allied Waste quickly initiated a new zero tolerance policy and was firing people for anything and everything. If you made a mistake, they'd fire you; if you had an accident, they'd fire you.

We finally had enough and decided to form a union. We knew we had a fight on our hands because this was our third attempt at organizing. The company made it really difficult. Management would confront, intimidate and coerce workers on a regular basis. They threatened to fire workers before they even had the chance to form a union and made it clear they didn't need a reason to do it — they'd find one. They didn't just threaten to fire workers either — they did fire people.

The company also forced workers to attend mandatory anti-union meetings twice a week. During these meetings, management would try to convince us that joining a union would just make our lives worse. They told us that we'd be paying union dues only to have someone else running our lives and that we wouldn't even get a contract out of it.

By this time, we'd heard plenty of the company's promises and knew they were empty. We organized for about eight months, but the company tried to stall us every step of the way. When we were trying to get a contract, we couldn't even get them to set a date for negotiations for several months. Then, we went from having two to three negotiation meetings per month to having maybe one.

It became clear that we'd have to take drastic measures if we really wanted things to change, so we organized a no-call/no-show. Only about 10 people out of 140 showed up for work that day.

That's when things started to turn around for us. The company knew that we were going to stick together and, if we were going to do a no-call/no-show, we'd do a strike.

Ten days later, Allied Waste agreed to negotiate a contract with us and held negotiation meetings for two or three days in a row. They knew they were facing another no-call/no-show, if they didn't.

I am now a proud member of Local 728 in Atlanta. But it was a tough fight — a fight that is stacked against workers. Companies can get away with anything, and workers really need better laws in place to help them fight against illegal, anti-union tactics.

AMERICOLD LOGISTICS said...

Employees Become Members Through Card-Check Recognition

April 12, 2007

Mechanics with Americold Logistics in Ontario, California recently became members of Local 63 in Covina after the company agreed to card-check recognition. The 10 mechanics join the 130 warehouse workers who became Teamsters in 2002.

“We’re pleased to have the mechanics join our other members at AmeriCold,” said Randy Korgan, Director of Organizing with Local 63. “We’re also pleased with how smooth this process has been.”

The workers joined together over concerns with inequities in pay and with the hopes of gaining retirement security through a pension plan. Negotiations with the company are underway.

Based in Atlanta, AmeriCold Logistics is the largest provider of temperature-controlled food distribution services in the country.

CHANGE FEDEX TO WIN said...

ORGCON-IV
Register Now for Organizers Conference April 27-28
Sign up today to attend OrgCon-IV, the fourth annual Teamster Organizers Conference to be held April 27-28 at Bally's Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.




Forming a union at your workplace gives you and your coworkers the power to stand up for your families, your futures and yourselves. Through a legal, binding contract it gives you a strong, collective voice with which to demand decent working conditions, with fair pay and benefits.

That's what the Teamsters are all about: decent working conditions, better pay, strong benefits and dignity and respect on the job.



Jeff Farmer
Director
The Teamsters can help you explain the benefits of union membership to your fellow employees, and assist in planning an organizing drive.

Once you and your coworkers become Teamsters, working with your local union representatives, contract language and proposals for negotiations are developed. Local union officers and business agents fight with you to win a fair, good-paying Teamster contract with job protection that you deserve.

Teamsters contracts are the best in the labor movement. We have earned our reputation for bargaining hard and demanding the best protections and wages. For more than a century, Teamsters solidarity has kept corporate America from holding the cards and calling all the shots. When you join the Teamsters, you put that history to work for you.

We are the Teamsters. We are 1.4 million strong and our membership is growing. Join us. WE WIN WHEN WE STAND AS ONE

NLRA/NLRB said...

Some FedEx Drivers Could Join Union, NLRB Says
30 In Hartford Are Ruled Employees; Teamsters Seeking To Represent Them
April 14, 2007
By JANICE PODSADA, Courant Staff Writer The National Labor Relations Board in Hartford ruled this week that some FedEx Home Delivery drivers should be considered employees and not independent contractors, a decision that gives those drivers the right to vote for union representation.

The ruling affects about 30 drivers employed at the company's terminal in Hartford, said David Lucas, secretary-treasurer of Teamsters Union Local 671, which filed the petition several months ago on behalf of the FedEx Home Delivery contract drivers. Local 671 is based in Bloomfield.

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FedEx Ground, a unit of FedEx Corp., argued that these drivers were independent contractors, and therefore the law did not apply to them, said John Cotter, assistant regional director for the Hartford NLRB, one of 33 regional offices of the independent federal agency.

Under its definition, the NLRB found that many FedEx drivers could be considered employees.

The ruling is part of an ongoing set of disputes between many companies and labor, in several industries, in which workers currently considered independent contractors are, in fact, treated as employees, and therefore are entitled to the rights employees enjoy - such as collective bargaining.

"This decision has the potential to affect the whole country," Lucas said.

The Teamsters Union has filed petitions in other states as part of a national effort to represent these drivers. The NLRB in Boston also arrived at the same decision several months ago, Lucas said.

FedEx has 14 days to appeal the decision with the agency's Washington, D.C., headquarters.

"We disagree with the NLRB regional district's ruling and, as usual in these cases, we're prepared to go forth with an election at our Hartford facility," said Perry Colosimo, a spokesman for FedEx Ground.

Colosimo said most of the FedEx workers that the company considers to be independent contractors would prefer to remain independent. He did not say whether the company would appeal the decision.

The NLRB in Hartford is in the process of setting up an election next week, Cotter said. That election could be postponed, however, if the agency's Washington, D.C., office finds in favor of an appeal.

Cotter said one of the key factors in the decision involved determining how much control the company had over the drivers in question. The greater the company's control, the more likely the workers are to be defined as employees and not independent contractors, Cotter said.

"As we all know, FedEx drivers have uniforms, they drive certain kinds of trucks and have designated routes. The company has regulations in regard to delivery and how they are paid."

"We found that, generally speaking, contract drivers were employees under the National Labor Relations Act," Cotter said.

"However, our decision doesn't include everybody who drives a truck for FedEx," Cotter said. "We excluded helpers hired by other drivers, temporary drivers, and drivers that have other people working for them."

Contact Janice Podsada at jpodsada@courant.com.

PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT said...

("RATS AT WIN-CO FOODS") These two-legged rats are far more dangerous than the four-legged variety.They spread the disease of low wages,which threaten the American standard of living in Southern California.They go by name IMAC. A rat is a contractor that does not pay all of its employees prevailing wages,including either providing or making payments for family health care and pension benefits,and its employees. Shame on WIN-CO FOODS for contributing to erosion of area standards for local carpenter craft workers.Carpenters local 803 has a labor dispute with IMAC the sub-contractor for W R LAYNE.IMAC does not meet area labor standards,including providing or fully paying for family health care and pension for all of its carpenter craft employees. Carpenters local 803 objects to substandard employers like IMAC working in the community.In our opinion the community ends up paying the tab for employees health care,that tends to lower general community standards,thereby encouraging crimes and other social ills. Carpenters local 803 believes that WIN-CO FOODS has an obligation to the community to do all it can to see that area labor standards are met for the carpenters who are building their new store. PLEASE TELL WIN-CO FOODS THAT YOU WANT IT TO DO ALL THEY CAN TO CHANGE THIS SITUATION AND SEE THAT AREA LABOR STANDARDS ARE MET FOR THEIR CARPENTERS.! RUN THE RATS OUT !

JOE NUNO said...

Remember future teamster brothers and sisters,management can't (spit) according to the National Labor Relation Board.They can't Spy on employees,they can't Promise or promote other employees for being against the union,they can't interagate you and ask you about the union,and finally they can't threating you for being for the union or having interest in the union.That is the definition of S.P.I.T ,REMEMBER GUYS KEEP THE DIRTY SIDE DOWN,GODBLESS AMERICA!

MR.BOYER (COCHISE) said...

Joe nuno is right,report any illegal activity that is describe about s.p.i.t,to your local NRLB.Have no fear and stand up for your rights,create solidarity as a group to shared interests and goals.Believe and have faith and confidence in the Teamster,you wont regret it.I was a Teamster and retired from the teamster,and as long as I receive a Teamster pension I am still a proud Teamster!Good luck guys

AN EDUCATION MESSAGE said...

Employer's Disparate Enforcement of E-Mail Policy Against Union Violate NLRA,Appeal Court Rules. An employor that barred employees from using the corparate e-mail system to discuss union matters but did not prevent any other nonbusiness uses of the system violate the National Labor Relations Act,the U.S. Court of Appeals for the fourth circuit ruled (Media Gen.Operations Inc.d/b/a Richmond TimesDispatch v. NLRB,4th cir.,No 061023,unpublished opinion 3/15/07. The appeals court enforced a National Labor Relations Board order against Media General Operations Inc.,affirming that the Richmond Times-Dispatch violated the NLRA when it told the Richmond Newspapers Professional Association,which represents Times-Dispatch employees,to stop using the employer's e-mail system to discuss union matters.Although Media General had a corparate policy that forbade employees from using e-mail for nonbusiness purposes,NLRB found that employees routinely used the system for messages related to charities,social events,and personal matters without being disciplined. Selective enforcement of the policy to prohibit unionrelated messages violates the NLRA,the board decided.Affirming NRLB's conclusion,the court emphasized that Media General made no attempt to enforce its e-mail policy prohibiting nonbusiness use of the system except against those who sent union-related messages.The e-mail system was frequently used by both hourly employees and (managers)to convey news about the employees'personal lives,to arrange social events,and to inform employees about charities,"the court said."Restriction of the union's access to this communication channel,while others were allowed unfettered access,is an unfair labor practice that is prohibited by the NLRB.