Cargo Workers Stage Job Actions

June 14, 2010: Backed by Teamsters Local 117, workers at several loading companies in the Puget Sound region were scheduled to stage job actions Friday at distribution centers operated by Safeway, Fred Meyer and Unified Grocers, among others.

The workers — called “lumpers” — are hired by third-party carriers to unload cargo at warehouse distribution centers. According to a teamsters press release, they are paid by the unit, or "piecework," rather than on an hourly basis and receive no health care or retirement benefits.

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