Next Up in UPS Round Two: Western Region and Local 177

October 4, 2013: Ballots will be counted starting Oct. 9 on UPS supplements in the Central and Pennsylvania. Another 35,000 Teamsters will be re-voting soon in the Western Region and New Jersey Local 177. But for now, there's an information Brownout on what they will be voting on.

The Western and New Jersey Teamsters are covered by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) attached to the national UPS contract, offering them a chance to "carve out" a new or join an existing health and welfare fund.  For over a month, they have been told the fund will have great benefits, but members have not been given any details.

The health benefits reportedly won't be revealed until mid-October after Hoffa and Hall see the round two contract results in the Central Region and Philadelphia. If the contract goes down again there, they may be reluctant to try their luck in the West, where the Southwest Rider was rejected by a 71% margin. 

Andy Marshall, Ron Herrera and other Teamster officials in the West are promising the "carve out" benefits will match the current good benefits members have. A website and benefit comparisons are in the works. Members will have their eyes on the details. 

Officials say they expect to mail out Western and New Jersey contract votes around the first of November.

It's been more than four months since members voted down their supplements. Since then, there have been no reports on any real changes in other supplement issues being bargained.

The Million Dollar Campaign

Meanwhile, the Hoffa-Hall administration has spent millions of dollars trying to make sure they pass the Central Region and Philadelphia area supplements: multiple mailings, glossy brochures, meetings, International reps gating UPS buildings, DVDs, phone calls, and more. 

If only they would put this kind of all-out effort into bargaining and enforcing the contract! 

What the Vote No Movement Won Already

The first No Vote on 18 supplements and riders has already paid off.  

The Vote No movement forced major improvements in health care benefits under TeamCare. Members can take pride in that victory while continuing to organize for more improvements.  

Beyond health care, the contract falls short on creating full-time jobs, dealing with forced overtime and harassment, and part-time poverty wages—not to mention new concessions, like the four-year progression.

UPS Teamsters will be meeting at the upcoming TDU Convention to discuss next steps for rebuilding Teamster Power at UPS.  

Issues

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Comments

Some UPS workers might look at the contract to see what issues affect them the most- job bidding-vacations-driver routes-overtime-working conditions. But healthcare will affect all workers and their families at some point in time-younger workers might not think about healthcare and pensions, but when the time comes it is the most important thing when it is time to retire. UPS workers must know and understand what changes are being made to the contract that will affect their retirement. In 10 yrs with retiree benefit costs going up each contract, retirees will be paying 1/3 to 1/2 of their pension on retiree healthcare-and pensions won't go up that fast to keep up. That is why a good union UPS worker is an educated union UPS worker that understands the whole contract, and how it affects ever worker now and in the future.

MY QUESTION I HAVE WHY IS THE IBT PUSHING THIS CONTRACT SO HARD. WHAT IS THE IBT GETTING OUT OF IT? WHAT ELSE IS THE IBT GOING TO USE UPS MONEY FOR?

My guess is, the union will be able to shift unused insurance funds to other areas that are in dire need such as CS pension funds or perhaps to rehire organizers. Just my 2 cents worth. If the insurance companies over estimate each year of what the coverage cost is. The excess is paid back to company, which is the IBT not UPS.

If this UPS contract gets passed the way it is now with all the changes to healthcare, UPS workers will regret that they didn't fight harder for improvements to the contract. Everything comes down to money and all union UPS workers will be paying a lot more money for their healthcare. I don't think any worker wants that, but you only get so many chances with the contract. Don't let it happen with this contract--don't live with regrets.