December 20, 2010: Freight Teamsters have gotten little but bad news from their employers and from the Hoffa administration.
Now freight retirees in the West—and those soon to retire—are facing health cost increases of over 400 percent!
The Western Teamsters Welfare Trust (WTWT) is raising the cost of retiree health care for many retirees from approximately $125 to a whopping $725 per month per individual ($1,450 to include spouse coverage). Even those eligible to join an HMO will have to pony up to $511 per month (or $1,022 for spouse coverage).
A Dec. 6 letter spells it out: due to fewer active freight Teamsters in the fund, there is not enough money coming in to continue the retiree Pre-Funding Program. Teamsters will be hit with impossibly high costs. This situation of isolating freight retirees should never have been allowed to happen. In the Central States Health and Welfare Fund, retirees pay $200 ($400 for a couple) because the fund has a broader base of funding along with funding from active freight Teamsters.
IBT Sits Back
YRC Teamsters who retire early have lost two years of pension credits and many have lost their eligibility for 80-and-out (age plus service years), but at least they could look forward to affordable health care coverage. Now that is being ripped off.
Once again the union leadership sat back, allowed the situation get to the edge of a financial cliff, then told Teamsters there’s no choice but to slash benefits.
If James Hoffa, Tyson Johnson, Ken Hall and Randy Cammack were covered by this fund, you can bet your rent money that action would have been taken to address the situation. They all have free health care for life, paid by Teamster dues.
YRC Teamsters have given up tens of thousands of dollars of wages and more than that in pension credits to save their company and jobs. Now many are facing the impossibility of retiring, due to this escalation of health care costs.