Friday, April 30, 2010

Nice to have someone on our side at the Labor Department

Obama's Labor Department wants companies to comply with wage, job safety and equal employment laws. The New York Times' Steve Greenhouse has the story:

In a move that will affect most American corporations, the Labor Department
plans to require companies to prepare and adopt compliance plans aimed at
ensuring they do not violate wage, job safety and equal employment laws. Read the whole thing

We've come a long way from the days of Elaine Chao!

Wow, they actually covered one of our rallies

I admit I was a little surprised when I saw the cable news channels covering the big anti-Wall Street demonstration in New York yesterday.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Of course, it took 31,000 people, when a mere 600 tea baggers can attract the cameras. Still, it’s an improvement.

Who says the recession is over?

A million people will soon run out of unemployment benefits. Tens of thousands in New York and Ohio. 130,000 in Florida. We need more jobs, damn it.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Every day should be Worker Memorial Day

For those who missed it, firedoglake’s Michael Whitney reminds us that Worker Memorial Day is about the 5,214 workers who died on the job in 2008.

Try to help stop the carnage. Sign a petition for Congress to pass the “Protecting America’s Workers Act."

Teamster takes down Wall Street Journal

Teamster Vincent Kloss from Ohio responds to a hideous Wall Street Journal editorial that repeats Fred Smith's talking points:

FedEx has developed a significant ground operation to compete with UPS. FedEx even uses ground transportation to transport its "air" packages where feasible. UPS simply wants a level playing field to compete with FedEx.

Your comment that UPS is at a disadvantage because its workforce consists of union members is an insult to every Teamster who helped build UPS into one of the most efficient, well-respected companies in the world. That system is labor intensive and requires thousands of dedicated employees to sort and deliver those packages.

You say that union employee equals "labor woes." I would hardly consider one 15-day work stoppage in my 32 years as a Teamster at UPS the kind of labor strife that has impeded UPS's ability to expand and be profitable. Last time I checked, UPS was still making billions of dollars in profits a year. And that, despite the fact that UPS was saddled with union employees.

Vincent J. Kloss
Aurora, Ohio

This just in: FedEx pilots are delivering your packages

Ace reporter John Hughes at Bloomberg has the scoop:

FedEx has said Express should be regulated under the railway law because the unit delivers most parcels by air and UPS ships mostly by truck.

I'm sure most people who get FedEx packages think they were delivered by delivery truck drivers, not airline pilots. Who knew?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

FedEx Drivers Aren't Pilots

Fred Smith has a strange idea about drivers

The union-busting FedEx CEO seems to think package delivery drivers are airline pilots. Today we launched a very funny video showing how ridiculous that claim is.

Coincidentally, today's the day Congress extended a bill called "FAA Reauthorization" for another two months. Fourteen years ago, FAA Reauthorization was the way Fred Smith got his special deal.

Smith convinced Congress to put FedEx Express employees under the Railway Labor Act, even though it covers only airlines and railroads. The RLA creates barriers for local union organizing, making it as hard for unions to organize at FedEx as Mormons to organize under Stalin (to borrow Harold Meyerson's line from today's Washington Post op-ed ).

The House of Representatives has voted to take Fred Smith’s legal loophole away from him in this year’s FAA Reauthorization bill. As the legislation makes its way through Congress, Fred Smith is desperately trying to hang on to his special deal.

Here at Teamster Nation we’re committed to make sure that doesn’t happen. Check out our new website to see how you can help:

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Hours of Service Listening Sessions End

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has ended its nearly three-month-long listening sessions regarding changes in Hours of Service rules. The Teamsters testified at the first hearing in Washington, D.C. This is an important issue for Teamster truck drivers.

Craig Becker Appointed to NLRB

President Obama has used the congressional recess wisely, appointing labor lawyers Craig Becker and Mark Pearce to the National Labor Relations Board. Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa praised the appointments.