Trucking used to be a ticket to the middle class. Now it’s just another low-wage job.

Lydia Depillis
The Washington Post
May 01, 2014

It’s a few minutes into a run carrying a load of scrap copper from the Port of New Jersey to a waste transfer station outside Philadelphia, and Miguel Tigre reaches over the dash of his maroon-and-yellow cab to grab a folder stuffed with the receipts squeezing him dry. He reels off calculations: He gets paid $400. It’s about 150 miles round-trip, and his truck gets 5.2 miles per gallon, so that's $180 in fuel. Tolls are $20. Taxes take about a quarter off the top -- but then there's insurance for the truck, and any repairs, which came to $22,000 last year.

All told, that amounts to $32,000 in take-home pay per year, which is barely enough to cover rent and food for him and his wife, who doesn’t work. Then there’s child support and car insurance. Tigre, a stocky 56-year-old with the paunch that comes from sitting for 12 hours a day, says he can’t afford health insurance -- he’s diabetic, and pays $100 a pop out of pocket for regular doctor’s visits, plus $300 a month for insulin. And retirement? Tigre laughs, harshly.

Click here to read more at The Washington Post.


Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
Get Advice Join TDU Donate

Recent News

Put Our Issues on the Table at UPS

Despite declaring the contract ratified, Denis Taylor says he will “return to the bargaining table to address a number of member concerns with the National Master UPS Agreement.” When bargaining resumes, UPSers expect our issues to be addressed.

UPS Teamsters Looking Ahead

UPSers are putting their anger to good use. We organized and Voted No to reject contract givebacks.  Now Hoffa and Denis Taylor are saying the contracts we rejected are “ratified.”

We demand they renegotiate reasonable changes.

View More News Posts