UPS Imposes 70-Hour Week

UPS has imposed new work rules that could force exhausted drivers to work up to 70 hours a week during peak. Drivers deserve a strong union response, not another Hoffa surrender.

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UPSers are already working brutal peak season hours and delivering record volume.  Now, UPS has unilaterally imposed a new method of calculating hours of service so they can force overworked drivers to work even more.

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Under DOT rules, the 70-hours-in-8-days hours of service method means that drivers can legally drive up to 70 hours per week in any 8-day period.

The DOT rules have a loophole called the 34-hour reset rule. Anytime a driver is off for 34 hours, then the work-week resets and a new 8-day period begins.

UPS plans to use this loophole to force drivers in some areas to work a sixth punch on Saturday, and to force all drivers to work up to 70 hours in a week until January 14 (the end of peak).

Without the 34-hour reset, a driver could only work a maximum of 70 hours over an eight-day period—a big difference.

Hoffa Surrenders, Betrays the Members

UPS imposed the Hours of Service change without warning and without negotiating with the union. The issue never came up in peak season talks.

But Hoffa’s Package Division just went along. They issued a weak memo from Denis Taylor and gave UPS the green light to abuse the workforce.

It didn’t have to be this way. By law and by contract, the International could demand that UPS negotiate before making this change.   

The IBT could also refuse to recognize the 34-hour restart rule for package drivers. The Freight Division refused to recognize the 34-hour restart rule at ABF, Yellow or Roadway in 2004.

If the Parcel Division took this stand, then package drivers would run out of hours if they worked more than 70 hours in any 8-day period. That would cap average daily hours at 11.66 hours a day.

Instead, Hoffa’s Package Division rolled over and punted the issue to be dealt with by each Area Supplement.

New England Teamsters immediately objected. UPS management backed off and sent the following DIAD message to drivers. Drivers need to demand this response from the IBT and UPS nationwide. 

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