Did We Win the New Protections That We Need?

October 17, 2007: In addition to wage and benefit improvements, UPS Teamsters are looking to the new contract to provide new language to protect Teamster members and their job security and to improve our quality-of-life on the job.

Here is a summary of some key changes in the proposed agreement

The complete text of the national language as well as many supplements is available online at www.makeupsdeliver.org.

TDU urges all UPS Teamsters to review the language carefully and get answers to your questions before you vote.

Excessive Overtime & 9.5 Grievances

The tentative agreement contains new language in Article 37 that increases the penalty UPS must pay for continually working a driver more than 9.5 hours from double time to triple time pay. That’s an improvement where the language is enforced.

But Article 37 also contains new restrictions that will disqualify some drivers from even filing 9.5 grievances and will make these grievances harder to win.

The proposed contract would establish two five-month periods “beginning on January 1 and June 1 of each year.”

To be eligible to even file a grievance during a five-month period, a driver has to sign an “opt-in” form.

Drivers who opt-out of the 9.5 language “will have no right to file a grievance alleging excessive overtime” for five months.

Another untested loophole has been added that gives the 9.5 Committee “the authority to adopt guidelines…to balance the Employer’s needs to protect the integrity of its operations with an employee’s legitimate need to avoid excessive overtime.”  

So new rules limiting 9.5 grievances could be coming down the pike.

Relief of Overtime /8-Hour Requests

Article 37 of the proposed contract establishes two-hour penalty pay at straight time when the company violates members’ contractual right to Relief of Overtime on a particular day.

In exchange, members must now submit their Relief of Overtime request five days in advance, instead of the day before, a big step backward.

The proposed language also includes loopholes that will make enforcement nearly impossible in some cases.

For example, the contracts states that UPS owes no penalty pay if the driver could “reasonably” have completed the dispatch within 8 hours.

UPS also doesn’t have to pay any penalty unless the driver works “in excess of 8.5 hours”—and even then the company doesn’t owe a dime if the excessive overtime is the “result of events beyond the Employer’s control.”

Subcontracting / Diverting Work to UPS Freight

Many UPS Teamsters are counting on the new contract to deliver tough new restrictions on all subcontracting—including diverting our work to UPS Freight.

The proposed deal contains no new language on subcontracting, except a Memorandum of Understanding at the end of the contract that says UPS will not subcontract feeder movements to outside trucking contractors “solely because it is less expensive.”

New Technology

UPS is introducing new technology that will enable management to monitor drivers location and functions like never before.  

To deal with this threat, our union proposed new language under Article 6 that would prohibit the company from using information obtained solely from the DIAD, GPS or any monitoring technology as evidence that an employee violated the contract or any Company policy.  

This strong language appears nowhere in the tentative deal. Instead, Article 6 states only that employees cannot be discharged “on a first offense” based on GPS technology “unless he/she engages in dishonesty.”

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