April 16, 2014: The Louisville Worldport Air Supplement “final offer” from UPS management was rejected by a whopping 94% last week. That’s Teamster solidarity.
Why are the members there so united for a better contract?
Thousands of Teamsters at the Worldport are forced to work for free, up to 30 minutes or even an hour a day. They have to wait for a shuttle at the huge airport complex to get to their work station, before they clock in, then do the same at the end of the shift.
The shuttle system is inadequate and Teamsters, many of them underpaid part-timers, are the ones paying the price.
Local 89 members are also fighting for more full-time combo jobs. The Worldport employs more low-wage part-timers than any UPS hub in the country. UPS agreed to create more full-time jobs in other supplements, and Local 89 is demanding a reasonable number.
The company is counting on the International Union to force through a bad contract in Louisville as political payback because Local 89 President Fred Zuckerman has been a vocal critic of Hoffa and Hall.
At stake is a contract covering nearly 9000 Teamsters who are getting the shaft from UPS. Teamster politics needs to take a back seat.
Some Teamster officials have started a whisper campaign that Local 89 is “holding up the national contract” to continue a lost battle over healthcare. It’s true that Local 89 has called for enhancements in Teamcare coverage, so no members suffer any benefit reduction. But that is just one of several issues on the table.
UPS can easily settle the remaining supplements and ratify the national contract by bargaining over reasonable union demands.
When it comes to dealing with the company, all Teamsters should stand as one.