ABF Freight System and the Teamsters union will open talks on a new multiyear labor contract Dec. 18, the trucking company and union said today.
The current ABF Freight-Teamster contract expires May 31.
The less-than-truckload carrier is expected to seek ways to reduce its labor costs, considered among the highest in LTL trucking, in the negotiations.
ABF Freight System also may seek relief from multi-employer pension costs, relief the carrier failed to win in its last contract talks with the union in 2008.
“Our goal is to reach an agreement that enables us to better compete in a rapidly changing freight transportation market,” said ABF President and CEO Roy Slagle.
Still unresolved is an ABF lawsuit against the Teamsters union and subsidiaries of LTL rival YRC Worldwide challenging wage cuts theunion granted YRC.
Protecting ABF employee wages, health care and retirement benefits are priorities for the Teamsters negotiating committee, union officials said in a statement.
ABF is the third largest unionized trucking company in the U.S., after YRC Freight and UPS Freight. About 76 percent of ABF’s employees are Teamsters.