Protecting Our Pensions

In April, retired and active Teamsters packed the Kansas City union hall and overflowed into the parking lot, concerned about the TDU report that a coalition of pension fund execs, union representatives and major corporations were teaming up to lobby Congress to make it legal to cut retirees’ pension checks.

It was TDU that broke the news on the ‘Solutions Not Bailouts’ plan. Growing rank-and-file pressure caused Hoffa to do a 180 and issue a letter in opposition to the proposal just hours before a congressional hearing. 

This statement by Hoffa is welcome. But the pension cut issue is far from over.

That’s why TDU is bringing members and retirees together, and working with AARP, the Pension Rights Center and others to protect our pensions. Now’s the time for Teamster locals, retiree clubs and members and retirees to get involved.

“Many of the fellow Teamsters I have talked to are in disbelief that Congress might allow our pensions to be cut. Some were moved to tears, frightened, while others became fighting mad,” says Dave Scheidt, a retired member of Local 41 in Kansas City.  “Join with me and TDU to fight for a fair solution for retirees and those who have not yet retired. We can win this with your help.”

Click here to join the TDU Pension Action Network.



In my opinion, we should not demand that congress not cut the retirees pensions, but rather start suggesting ways to keep our earned retirements in place.

First of all, I think we should acknowlege the fact that we are aware of the strain that the failing economy has placed on the troubled retirement fund. Anyone that does not see that we have a support problem is not being reasonable. Then maybe congress may be willing to listen to some reasoning as to ways to solve the problems that are faced.

I am sure there are many among us that have in their minds ideas that could help resolve these issues. Threats, and demands that the pensions must remain the same as they have always been are not realistic in my opinion.

I would like to offer my thoughts that I think should be considered. Congress needs to be reminded that a change in the economy and a stable and rising market can affect our fund positively and dramatically the same as a declining market can can adversely affect it. Provisions for this possibilty should be left intact. Does anyone, even the congressmen Dem or Rep, think that the Cental States Fund should just be given a free pass on this matter. CENTRAL STATES IS NOT BROKE, AND THEY SHOULD NOT BE GIVEN A FREE PASS ALLOWING THEM TO DO THIS TO THE ONES THAT HAVE EARNED THESE PENSIONS. CENTRAL STATES SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO MAKE UP THE DIFFERENCE AFTER PBGC HAS PAID WHAT THEY ARE REQUIRED TO PAY.