Meet Teamsters who are making a difference and arm yourself with information at the TDU Rank-and-File Convention, Oct. 26-28 at the Chicago Holiday Inn O'Hare.
Take the TDU Recruitment Challenge and we'll wave your registration fee. Click here to learn more.
Ask the Experts
Workshops at the TDU Convention are led by Teamster leaders, labor experts, and attorneys. Learn more about grievances, safety, arbitration, pension rights, and more.
Tools to Win
Get the tools you need to build a stronger union in workshops on enforcing our contracts, defending our benefits, getting members involved, advanced grievance handling, running for local union office, and much more.
Meet Teamsters from Across Our Union
Meet Teamster stewards and members to compare what works. Special meetings for public sector, freight, UPS, rail, UPS freight, warehouse, bus drivers, and more. Plus caucus meetings for African Americans, Latinos, and women Teamsters.
We'll Be There!
Make UPS Deliver in 2013
"The UPS contract expires next year, and the company and union are bargaining early again.
"UPS Teamsters are uniting in Chicago to make plans to win the contract we deserve."
Roz Coleman, UPS, Local 688, St. Louis
Uniting Members to Rebuild Teamster Power
"Standing up for our rights at work and in the union takes courage. Knowing you are not alone in the fight makes it much easier.
"The TDU Convention unites members from every industry, who are working to rebuild our union’s power."
Frank Halstead, TDU International Steering Committee
Local 572, Ralphs Warehouse, Los Angeles
Education for a Stronger Union
"I’ll be coming to my first TDU Convention because the educational workshops look first rate. Teamsters where I work are coming together to enforce our contract, get members involved, and build a stronger union.
"Education for Teamster power is what we need and that’s what TDU is all about."
Nick Williams, Local 251, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence
The Convention will begin on Friday at 1 p.m. and end Sunday at 3:30 p.m..
All events will be held at the Chicago Holiday Inn O'Hare (5615 North Cumberland Avenue).
All rooms must be reserved directly through TDU.
Call TDU at (313) 842-2600 or use the link below to register today.
March 1, 2012: Recruit five new members to TDU by Oct. 1 and we’ll waive your registration fee to the 2012 TDU Convention.
TDU recruitment makes everything we do possible.
Imagine what we could do with even more members. Can you help make it happen?
Click here to download a form to take the TDU Recruitment Challenge or call TDU at 313-842-2600 to get membership applications and recruitment materials.
Recruit five members at the normal rate, or 10 part-timers. Be sure to write your name as the sponsor on each new membership card. Return the filled-out cards on the right and dues payments to: TDU, P.O. Box 10128, Detroit, Mich. 48210.
TDU membership is kept confidential. TDU solicits and accepts membership applications and donations only from Teamsters, retired Teamsters and spouses who are not employers.
Uniting Members to Make a Stronger Union
“I recruited five new members last year. Not everyone joins right away. But when they see us out there working and feel how important TDU is, they’re willing to do their part.”
“TDU brings fresh faces into our movement. It unites members from different industries to share the information and skills we need to make a stronger union.
“We’re only as strong as our members. If you believe in our union and this movement, help build TDU.”
Lupe Hernandez, Ralphs, Local 63, Los Angeles
The Best Advice for Teamster Members
“I recruited eight new members to TDU last year and got a free convention registration.
“A group of us attended and came back with the best legal and organizing advice out there for Teamsters.
“It’s my goal to is to recruit even more members this year!”
Nick Perry, UPS, Local 413, Columbus, Ohio
How to Recruit to TDU
Most new members join TDU because another Teamster recruits them by urging them to join, nswering their questions and mailing in their membership form.
Different approaches work for different people at different times. Here are some basic ideas to keep in mind. You can make use of them, and add your own
There are many obstacles to successfully recruiting members to TDU. But one of the biggest obstacles is the easiest to overcome–we don’t ask enough Teamsters to join TDU.
Passing out Teamster Voice and other information, wearing TDU buttons and putting leaflets on bulletin boards are all activities that let people know about TDU and what is going on in our union.
But to convince people to join TDU, you have to talk with them and you have to ask them to join.
Sometimes the fear of being turned down stops us from asking other members to join TDU. But even when a member says, “No thanks,” asking still gives us an opportunity to talk about TDU that we might not have otherwise.
Asking Members One-On-One
Making a one-on-one appeal to ask a member to join is the key to recruitment.
Before you talk to a potential member, you need to ask yourself several questions. How will you talk to this particular person? How is TDU addressing the issues that are important to them?
Listening to individual members about their issues and concerns is the best way to get ideas about what would motivate them to join TDU.
Closing the Deal
If you get a positive response from someone, ask them to fill out a membership card and give you their dues right away. If they want to join, they’ll appreciate your taking care of it for them.
People may take a card with every intention to mail it in. But we all know how things end up on the dresser, coffee table, or dashboard and easily become
In order to get people to sign up on the spot, make sure you always have a supply of membership cards with you. If you need membership cards, call the TDU office at (313) 842-2600.
Targeting, Planning & Tracking
A few additional steps can help you be more organized and more successful as a recruiter.
- Target: Who are the most likely people to join TDU that you know? List them on a TDU Builder Chart. When possible, try to target people who are respected by other members. If they join, they may bring a lot of other members with them.
- Plan: When is the best place to talk to each person on your list–on lunch break, after work, at a TDU meeting or elsewhere? It’s always a good idea to ask people right after they get paid.
- Track your progress: Many TDU recruiters use a 5-point scale to track their recruitment attempts by assessing how close a person is to joining TDU.
The 5-point scale works like this: 1= joins when asked; 2 = promised to join; 3 = may join after more discussion; 4 = unlikely to join ; 5 = anti-TDU. These assessments will help you determine the next steps to take to get someone to join.
What if Someone Says No?
Very few people join TDU the first time they are asked. They may want to think about. They may even say no. But unless someone is openly hostile, you should not let one “no” discourage you from continuing to talk over time with a member about TDU.
Follow up, raise issues that are important to the member, tell them what TDU is doing, and continue asking them to join.
The TDU Builders Network
The TDU Builders Network is made up of recruiters like you who are using an organized approach to recruitment. Working together, we can build and strengthen our organization.
We are asking all network members to use the TDU Builders Chart. The chart will help you to target nd to track your efforts. It will also help TDU to track our recruitment progress nationally. If you don’t have a copy or need an extra, contact TDU.
Save the date: The TDU Convention will be Friday, Oct. 26 through Sunday, Oct. 28 at the Chicago Holiday Inn O’Hare.
Click here to download a leaflet on the 2012 Convention.
Here’s what we’re planning for this year’s convention:
- Over a dozen educational workshops on grievance handling, benefits, bargaining, running for office, and more.
- Industry breakouts for UPS, freight, UPS freight, airline, waste, and grocery, plus caucus meetings for African American, Latino, and women Teamsters.
- Presentations from Teamster leaders and members who are making a difference by enforcing our contracts, defending our benefits, and beating member apathy.
For more information, call TDU at (313) 842-2600.
Are you planning on attending? Click here to let us know.
TDU wishes you and your family a warm, happy and healthy holiday season.
In 2011, TDU mobilized Teamster members to stand up to employers and to build a stronger, more progressive Teamsters Union.
In the coming year, Teamsters and workers everywhere will face new challenges. TDU will be there. We’re proud to stand with you—and wish you and your families the very best in this holiday season.
Teamsters have united in a grassroots army to elect Sandy Pope as our next Teamster General President.
The Sandy Pope campaign is bigger than TDU. But TDU members have helped lead the way every step of the campaign. Educating members, raising funds, building the campaign army, and turning out the votes we need to win.
For 35 years, TDU has brought together working Teamsters to have a voice and make a difference in our union on the job, in our locals, and in national elections.
Winning the Right to Vote
Before TDU, members didn’t have the right to vote for our union’s top officers.
TDU members led a decade-long campaign to win the right to vote. Thanks to TDU, members won that right in 1989.
A New Direction for Our Union
TDU members put that right to use in the first ever one-member one-vote election for IBT General President in 1991. TDU helped vote the old guard out of office and elected Ron Carey, our union’s first democratically elected president. Under new leadership, our union reversed a 16-year decline in membership. Mobilized members won the 1997 UPS strike—labor’s biggest victory in decades.
Taking on Hoffa
After 13 years of Hoffa, Teamster Power is once again on the decline. But TDU members haven’t given up—TDU has helped expose the failures of the Hoffa administration and united members to say no to concessions and benefit cuts. Now we’re at the front of the movement to dump Hoffa and elect Sandy Pope.
After the Ballots are Counted
The job of turning our union around won’t stop when the ballots are counted.
TDU brings together members who want to make a difference for the long haul. That’s what we’ve been doing for 35 years. If you’re ready to do your part, you belong in TDU.
Countdown to Victory TDU Membership Offer
Join TDU before the ballots are counted for just $25 for your first year.
September 15, 2011: After the dramatic UPS strike victory of 1997, the Teamsters stood at the forefront of the labor movement. Teamster power was being reborn. But there were tough times ahead.
The coming years would see Ron Carey’s reform efforts ended, and the coming to power of James Hoffa and the old-guard officials around him.
Some people predicted TDU would die. But TDU stayed the course through difficult times, kept our principles, and built the Teamster reform movement.
TDU has been the watchdog organization that members could trust to tell the truth, when all they got from Hoffa was PR.
Hoffa Takes Power
Hoffa made big promises to win office in late 1998. His slate was called the “Jim Hoffa No Corruption, No Dues Increase, 25-and-Out Slate.” It was up to TDU to hold the Hoffa administration accountable to members.
Within a year of taking office, Hoffa added 137 multiple salaries to the IBT payroll. He used multiple salaries as part of a “carrot-and-stick” strategy to get support among officials. Get on board, get a check. Those who spoke out often found a “Personal Representative” assigned to their local to undermine them.
Hoffa broke all his promises. No dues increase? He held a special three-hour convention in Las Vegas to raise members’ dues from 2 to 2.5 hours, with the International taking most of the increase. The income of the International was doubled.
No corruption? He hired former U.S. Attorney Ed Stier to combat corruption, but Stier resigned in 2004 and stated that “The problem is Hoffa” regarding Teamster corruption.
25-and-out? His administration ended that in major pension funds, and his disastrous 2007 decision to cave in to UPS has put the Central States Pension Fund on life support.
TDU and the Future
Through the Hoffa years, rank-and-file Teamsters who support TDU have provided an alternative voice and alternative vision.
TDU has been there, to support candidates in 2001 and 2006 so that Hoffa has to face an election, and be accountable to the members. He won those elections, but TDU preserved Teamster democracy. Without TDU, there would have been no elections at all.
TDU has been there, to help members reform locals, learn how to negotiate contracts, enforce our legal rights, and more.
Some national contracts negotiated by Hoffa have been rejected, including the recent one for United Airline mechanics. Hoffa’s power to run roughshod over locals and members has been held in check.
As we approach the 2011 election, members again have a choice. They can vote for five more years of Hoffa, or they can elect Sandy Pope for a new day and a new direction.
TDU members can take pride in being the driving force in making that choice possible.
Just a word of thanks to Dave Thornsberry and the men and women like him at the Teamsters Convention.
I was a proud Teamster in the ‘97 strike and it makes me sick to watch this great union going down the toilet the last decade under this so-called leadership.
I may not be able to vote. But I can give my time, and I would like to challenge all the other retirees to contact someone in their area and volunteer.
Let’s elect Sandy Pope, a real Teamster, to lead us forward! Don’t wait till it’s too late.
Wayne Sharp Local 89, Retired Louisville, Ky.
On June 24, I rallied with 25,000 union activists against anti-union legislation in New Jersey. Governor Chris Christie denied all the unions the right to negotiate pensions and health benefits for all state, county, and municipal union workers.
I am writing you with great disappointment. I went with another retired Teamster—and we were both shocked and disappointed that out of 25,000 union activists, we saw only one other Teamster, and he was from a New York local.
The Teamsters represent hundreds if not thousands of public sector workers in New Jersey.
I can only hope that Sandy Pope can change the image of our great union and in the future be a force to be reckoned with.
Frank Klem Local 701, Retired New Jersey
The last issue of Teamster Voice incorrectly quoted brother Curtiss Zeolla. His quote should have read: “We’ve got to get out there to support Sandy Pope, and the TDU Convention is where we’ll plan the final push to win. I was so encouraged to meet all the great Teamsters at my first convention last year. I’ll see you in Cleveland.”
September 8, 2011: Make sure you get the special election edition of Teamster Voice, an all-in-one tool to help inform members on what’s at stake in this election and what the plan is to win strong, new leadership for our union.
This special edition will include:
- The latest updates from the Sandy Pope Campaign and news on the Teamster election.
- Reports on what this election means for UPS, Freight, airline, waste, beverage and other Teamster industries.
- Why Sandy Pope is the only candidate that can beat Hoffa.
- A special Sample Ballot page showing members how they can vote for Sandy Pope, our independent candidate for Teamster President.
- And more.
Order a bundle of 50 issues for just $10. Order 150 for $15, or 200 copies for just $22.
Click here to order you bundle. Or call TDU at 313-842-2600.
Order your bundle now and we’ll ship it out to you when Teamster Voice goes to press next week.
“If we want to save our union, we need to hit the ground hard between now and November and keep building the Sandy Pope campaign.
I just ordered an extra 150 copies of this upcoming issue to help spread the word and get out the vote in my area.”
Todd Hartsell, UPS, Local 90, Des Moines, Iowa
This Labor Day, I will be relaxing with my family and friends. But I’ll also be thinking about what it will take to move our union in the right direction.
Our union, our jobs, and our benefits are under attack. Hoffa is missing in action.
This fall we have a chance to change leadership and change direction.
That’s what TDU is all about. And that’s why we’re supporting Sandy Pope’s Campaign.
If you already are a TDU member, thank you for all that you do.
Together I know that we can rebuild our union.
Happy Labor Day!
Ken Paff TDU National Organizer
PS … TDU is gearing up for our annual convention, Friday, Sept. 30 – Sunday, Oct. 2 in Cleveland. Sandy Pope will be a guest speaker and it will feature great classes. If you agree with TDU’s mission, we hope to see you at our convention.