Monday, April 16, 2012

Teamsters want executives to quit looting Hostess, rescue the company

Practice picket in Farmingdale, N.Y. last week.
The Teamsters are advising Hostess executives to quit looting the company in order to save it. The union and the Twinkie maker will face off in bankruptcy court tomorrow.

The plan follows Hostess's latest unseemly show of bad faith. Over the weekend, Hostess management leaked a "final offer" to the Associated Press well before the Teamsters had even seen it. That offer, of course, included huge concession from the union.

Ken Hall, Teamsters general secretary-treasurer, said "I don't think so." The Teamsters then gave Hostess a plan that included no more looting of the company by executives.
The Teamsters’ proposal demands that executives, as well as all stakeholders, actually share equally in the financial sacrifices necessary for Hostess to emerge from bankruptcy instead of paying lip-service to the concept.Hostess workers have already sacrificed for this company. 
Under management’s one-sided proposal, Hostess workers again are the only ones doing the sacrificing. Executives lie and claim labor costs are to blame. But it is incompetence and greed, pure and simple, that have put this iconic company in the position it is in today.
According to Dow Jones,
The Teamsters' proposal includes about $150 million in annual concessions, Hall said, savings that come by implementing a two-year wage freeze, dropping health insurance costs and cutting pension costs back to about 40% of what they are now. The proposal also makes demands on the company: calling for it to have no more than $400 million in funded debt upon its exit from bankruptcy and mandating that the terms of any bankruptcy-exit financing be subject to the Teamsters' approval.
The Teamsters are threatening to strike if the bankruptcy court throws out collective bargaining agreements, as Hostess has asked it to.

Stay tuned.