UPS Strike Q&A

Get the answers to Frequently Asked Questions about a strike at UPS. Download and share the Strike Q&A from UPS Teamsters United and the IBT Strike Captain Resources toolkit. 

UPS Strike Q&A

Address members' questions with the facts. The company is using rumors to play divide-and-conquer. We are uniting to win. 

When will a strike begin?

Our strike deadline is August 1. A strike will begin only when it is announced by the union.

How will the strike line and picketing assignments be organized?

Your local union is responsible for setting up and maintaining an effective strike line. They will appoint and coordinate strike captains to handle picket line staffing and scheduling. If you are interested in being a strike captain, contact your local. A strike is an allhands on deck situation. Be ready to volunteer, cooperate, and do what is needed.

What is expected of me on a picket line?

Participate actively by picketing, chanting, marching, and volunteering. Build unity. Counter division and rumors. Keep a cool head. De-escalate conflict. Report issues to your picket captain and follow their lead. Remember that we are in the eyes of the public and our actions can be recorded at any time. Use your cell phone to record video and document violence or violations by scabs or management.

What is ambulatory picketing?

During a strike, UPS will try to make deliveries to priority customers. Under federal law, it is legal to extend a picket line to a location while managers or scabs are attempting to make deliveries. This is called ambulatory picketing and it is an important and powerful tactic. You must get instructions and follow the rules when ambulatory picketing.

How much is strike pay?

The International Union pays weekly strike benefits of five times your monthly dues rate. For example, if you pay $105 a month in dues, your weekly strike benefit will be $525. The minimum strike benefit is $200 a week. Strike pay starts on day one of the strike. You must be a member in good standing to receive strike pay.

What happens to my health insurance during a strike?

TeamCare, which covers most UPS Teamsters, will continue to cover striking workers and their families at no cost. If you do not have TeamCare, you need to contact your local union or health fund.

Am I allowed to work a non-UPS job during a strike?

Yes. You can work a non-UPS job during the strike to supplement your strike pay. You must complete your picket-line duties.

What happens if someone crosses the picket line?

Crossing the picket line is the worst mistake you can make. A person who crosses the picket line is a scab for life. They will be shunned by their coworkers for the rest of their careers. They can be fined and expelled from the union. A strike will be short. The consequences of scabbing last forever. If someone is considering crossing the picket line, talk with them, address their concerns, and make sure they don’t make a mistake they will regret. 

Can I be fired for striking?

The right to strike is protected by federal law. You cannot be fired for striking. But UPS can try to discipline strikers who make threats or engage in violence on the picket line. Use your free speech rights, but use your head at the same time. 

Can we be "permanently replaced" by UPS?

An employer cannot permanently replace strikers who are on an Unfair Labor Practice strike. Most importantly, UPS cannot replace 340,000 skilled workers and they cannot operate without us.

What do I do if I'm on the road when the strike begins?

If you are on the road in a company vehicle when the strike begins, you must return UPS’s property to the company without damage. Contact your Business Agent and let them know that you are heading back to the UPS building. When you get there, confirm with UPS personnel that the truck has been returned and the keys are in their possession. 

The government blocked railroad workers from striking. Can that happen to us?

Railroad unions operate under a totally different set of rules under the Railway Labor Act (RLA). Under the RLA, Congress has the power to impose a contract under any terms and conditions it wants. UPS Teamsters work under a different law – the National Labor Relations Act. The NLRA does not give Congress the power to impose a contract. Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Julie Su said she “does not see a reason to intervene” in a strike at UPS.


Strike Preparation Toolkit

The IBT and Local Unions are in charge of strike preparation. But we can all help get strike-ready. Check out the UPS Teamsters United Strike Preparation Toolkit.


IBT Strike Captain Resources

Read the IBT Strike Captain Resources toolkit for additional detailed information.

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