Convoy 229 September 2005

Leaving AFL-CIO Threatens Union Solidarity

President Hoffa says we left the AFL-CIO to “change to win.” But I’m concerned about what the move is going to mean for union solidarity and the old principle that there’s strength in unity.

Court Rules Against Retiree Rights

September 15, 2005: The federal Court of Appeals in Chicago ruled on Sept. 8 against Teamster retirees who were fighting to broaden their right to work to supplement their Central States pension.

Teamster Families Fight Driver Fatigue

Teamsters and their families demonstrated August 29 outside the federal building in Nashville to protest Yellow’s deployment of fatigued drivers. Inside, attorney Paul Taylor was arguing the case of TDU member Ron Melton, who alleged the company disciplined him when he refused to drive because of fatigue. Yellow had kept Melton waiting by the phone for more than seven hours after his scheduled bid start time. At right, Local 480 Teamster Terry Warren.

Red Star Teamsters Press for Rights

Seven million dollars is on the table as the proposed WARN Act settlement to pay off Teamsters put out of work when USF Red Star closed its doors last year.

Why No Fizz in the UPS COLA?

Why No Fizz in the UPS COLA?The UPS contract has a cost of living allowance (COLA), which was played up in selling the contract as the “best ever.” Why then do we never get anything out of this clause?

An examination of the details of Article 33 shows why. There are three fine-print facts to know about the clause. First, before the COLA kicks in, the inflation rate has to exceed 3 percent on a May to May yearly basis. From May 2004 to May 2005 that rate was 2.9 percent, so no COLA. Second, even if it got a little over three percent, it would still pay zero, because the formula has to get to a five cent raise or it doesn’t count. This means inflation has to exceed about 3.5 percent to get that five cent wage adjustment.

Fighting the Overtime Blues


A long hot summer has been even longer and hotter for the thousands of UPS package car drivers who contend with constant and excessive overtime.

The short-term impact of this problem on Teamsters is tremendous. Weekday family life is nonexistent. Weekends are for recovery. The long-term effects include more injuries, more accidents and difficulty making it to retirement age. TDU spoke with a number of stewards and business agents about this issue and what can be done to protect members.

"Everyone is upset,” according to Des Moines Local 90 steward Todd Hartsell. “We are seeing people who have never filed a grievance filing them now. Standards are being cut, stop counts and overtime are up.”

Who Is Running the Teamsters Union?

September 25, 2005: Do you know Greg Tarpinian? If you care about your union, you should. He’s practically running it. And you are paying him millions of dollars to do it.

TDU Wins Changes in Election Rules

September 25, 2005: The Election Rules, which govern our election for International officers and delegate elections in every local, have been improved, thanks to a strong set of proposals from Teamste

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