October 17, 2013: The IBT Annual Women's Conference was held in New Orleans on September 19-21.
Women Teamsters from all over the U.S. and Canada, and different Teamster industries—from UPSers and truck drivers to warehouse workers and public workers—got the chance to meet one another, share experiences and form friendships.
Seminars included "Be the Arbitrator" where members go through different grievance scenarios from beginning to end as seen from the arbitrator’s point of view, shop stewards training, stress at the workplace, organizing in a multi-generational workplace, and many more.
Kioma Forero, of New York Local 804 and a steering committee member of the NY-NJ TDU Chapter, said the conference "educates you and empowers you. Females often feel left out in the male-dominated world of Teamsters, but we are a driving force in the labor movement. If you want to feel unity, this is the place to be. I encourage you to talk with your local and try to get there next year."
Cindy Stricker, a steward at Dorada Foods and TDUer out of Oklahoma Local 886, said she is still energized from the experience. "The fire, the energy is just so unbelievable. It's been 3 weeks and I still have a charge from it. Women are starting to emerge, starting to shine. The bonds you make are so amazing. The classes were informative. We can take this back and bring it to our members."
Our union needs to tap this energy, and encourage more women to take leadership roles.
TDU believes that a strong union involves everyone. Click here to get in touch with our Women's Caucus.