October 18, 2006. The neutrality agreement with UPS Freight, announced by James Hoffa in dramatic fashion in Las Vegas this June is now officially over. UPS Freight spokesman Ira Rosenfeld emphasized to Traffic World that the Teamsters would be bargaining for “one location only” and that the neutrality deal is now void.
A “neutrality and card check” agreement with a company allows our union to organize without company opposition, and when a majority of workers join the Teamsters, the company agrees to bargain. Hoffa claimed that he had such a deal with UPS Freight (formerly Overnite), but it later was revealed that it covered only one terminal, with less than one percent of UPS Freight’s workers.
The International targeted UPS Freight in Indianapolis, quickly got a majority of cards signed, and will start negotiations with UPS Freight Indianapolis in September.
Bargaining with one terminal out of 200 with UPS will not be easy. When the Teamsters organized 37 Overnite terminals, Hoffa could not bargain a contract.
The neutrality and card check deal will revive only if the IBT wins it (along with an acceptable union contract that does not undercut our national UPS and freight contracts) in a signed agreement with UPS Freight in Indianapolis. UPS members have also raised the issue in contract proposal meetings that neutrality be won not only for UPS Freight, but all UPS nonunion operations.