New Economy Role Stiffens UPS Strike Talk

Discussion in 'The Archives' started by anonymous, May 25, 2002.

  1. anonymous

    anonymous Guest

    excerpt:

    Organized labor has generally declined in importance for the past 30 years, but occasionally other economic changes bolster the bargaining power of a particular union, if not the union movement.

    This appears to be the case at present with at least a segment of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

    Despite a fragile economic recovery, which jeopardizes the business prospects of all employers, and a number of special factors from higher fuel costs to the need for intensified security particular to package delivery companies, the Teamsters employed at the United Parcel Service Inc. (UPS) have voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike if a new contract is not agreed to by July 31. The Teamsters announced Monday that at secret ballot votes taken at membership meetings on May 18 and 19, 93% of the roughly 210,000 UPS Teamsters voted to authorize a strike. And yet the conventional wisdom is that most employees have strong enough memories of the damage done to the their company's market share during a 1997 strike that they won't risk repeating it by taking the threat to the next level.

    On the one hand, the Teamsters' confrontational actions stand as a bold move, especially at a time when the unemployment rate is still rising and a meandering stock market is underscoring the fragility of the recovery. Clearly, the union feels it can afford to act this way, and yet there is also evidence that some workers are a little unnerved by the prospects of the company losing out to its competitors.
     
  2. lr1937

    lr1937 Guest

    I would suggest you call the author of this article, John McAuley and ask him where he got the 93% of 210,000 teamsters voted. I have called and left him a message suggesting that he should research numbers before printing them. Does any one know who you report bogus unformation like this to. Please post if you do.
     
  3. anonymous

    anonymous Guest

    This is a copy of an email sent regarding this article:

    The following statement is taken from
    BIG PICTURE: New Economy Role Stiffens UPS Strike Talk

    DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

    (This article was originally published Tuesday)

    By John McAuley
    Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
    as published in the Wall Street Journal online edition:

    The Teamsters announced Monday that at secret ballot votes taken at membership meetings on May 18 and 19, 93% of the roughly 210,000 UPS Teamsters voted to authorize a strike.

    This statement is in error, the correct information is that of the Teamsters that voted 93% voted to authorize a strike. To my knowledge the Teamster's have not released the percentage of members that voted, but that number would be much less than 93%.

    The following is an excerpt from the Teamster.com web site

    Secret ballot votes were taken at membership meetings on May 18 and 19 of all 196 local unions who represent UPS Teamsters. According to preliminary results announced May 20, members voted by a 93 percent to 7 percent margin for a strike authorization.

    As you can see the 93% figure is stated to be a portion of the vote, not of the membership that had voted. This statement is misleading
    and will create the impression that the probability of a strike is much higher than it actually is. A published correction to clarify the numbers quoted in your article is necessary and will be greatly appreciated.
     
  4. driver1

    driver1 Guest

    I talked to John McCauley. He said he got his info from the teamsters. I pointed out the inaccuracy of his 93% and he said he had rec'd tons of phone calls and e-mails. Info I saw indicates around 5% of total members voted for strike authorization.He indicated he would research it and maybe publish an update.
     
  5. brown666

    brown666 Guest

    Every member had an opportunity to cast their strike vote. If they did not vote, who's fault is that? 93% is a valid figure of the total membership, regardless of the votes cast.This figure is accurate within +/- 3%. Sorry, but their is a strong sentiment from rank and file members to strike if the need becomes evident!!
     
  6. proups

    proups Guest

    The strike vote is a sham and everybody knows it. I don't know anybody from my center that went and voted except the shop stewards.

    This is just another example of the IBT wanting their 15 minutes of fame every five years and using UPS negotiations to get it.

    The IBT doesn't care about any of us - just the media attention they get during negotiations. How many UPS officials do you see driving shiny new Suburbans with UPS logos and their names plastered all over the sides? The IBT guys are egomaniacs that don't care about anything more than the next media interview so they can slam our company and drive customers away.
     
  7. gsx1990

    gsx1990 Guest

    proups,
    While I agree with you on most points, I have
    to agree with brown666 about the vote. There
    was an option for the rank and file to vote, but
    apparantly most did not. The reasons vary, but
    the bottom line is that those that voted, voted
    to authorize a strike. The rank and file cannot
    complain they did not have a chance to voice their
    opinion.

    gsx90
     
  8. spycmon

    spycmon Guest

    Proups, "How many UPS officials do you see driving shiny new Suburbans with UPS logos and their names plastered all over the sides? " Not many you're right, just Mercedes Benz lined up like a dealer's lot. I think they cost more than Suburbans.....
     
  9. my2cents

    my2cents Guest

    gsx1990,

    If you have ever been to one of these meetings yourself, I believe you will find them to be a waste of time. The only thing these meetings ever gave me were lessons in crowd psychology. Strike-authorization votes follow the procedures outlined in the IBT Constitution and "Robert's Rules of Order." That's technically fine, but these meetings typically have a negative tone against the company from the get-go.

    Usually, an officer takes the podium and expresses outrage over the company's insulting offers, bad faith bargaining, or whatever the case may be. The audience gets increasingly uncomfortable and disgruntled. Once everyone is at fever pitch, the vote is taken by show of hands. Hardly anybody votes "no," especially if it means being singled out by militants with a menacing stare.
     
  10. gsx1990

    gsx1990 Guest

    my2cents,
    Very interesting. However, I had read somewhere
    that the vote was private? Am I wrong? What %
    of UPS workers do you think are the hardcore
    union types that hate UPS? 5%? 10%? 20%? I have
    been told its between 10 and 20%. Its a shame the
    silent majority doesn't speak up. Thank God the
    silent majority works hard and they do indeed deserve a fair pay raise.
     
  11. smlsrtgrl

    smlsrtgrl Guest

    I kinda get an anti union vibe here and I may be wrong, but the union is looking after our interest and the company is looking after thiers. Right! I do not have blind faith in the union nor am I stupid. If we did not have a union at UPS we would not have many of the things we do. I have learned over the past 5 that without a union I would have lost battles on many different fronts. I like working for UPS some days and other days....Well you know. Please do not take offense to my opinion, cuz thats all it is.
     
  12. my2cents

    my2cents Guest

    gxs1990,

    I don't know what you mean by "private," unless you mean voting on a slip of paper handed out, which some locals may do. In regards to the percentage voting, its whoever decided to show up at the union hall on the day the vote was taken. Ten to twenty percent sounds like a good guess to me. Speaking for myself, I did not attend the meeting held at my local. I couldn't anyway because I'm a non-member. What I outlined in my previous post was what I learned from attending these meetings in the past.
     
  13. gsx1990

    gsx1990 Guest

    smlsrtgrl,
    I'm more anti-teamsters than I am anti-union. I think UPS employees would do themselves a great favor to form their own union, and rid themselves of the teamsters.

    I honestly dont think the teamsters leadership has the average UPS person's interest in mind. They are a business of themselves. Its a shame UPS has to contribute to a pension plan that supports alot of teamsters that were NEVER UPS employees.

    I always ask myself, how does FDX do it without
    a union? Perhaps they are run like a nazi slave
    camp....?
     
  14. proups

    proups Guest

    Spy: the only difference between the UPS Manager's Mercedes and the Teamster's Suburbans are the UPS Managers pay for their Mercedes themselves. We pay for the Teamster's Surburbans with our dues......feel better?

    my2cents: you are exactly right about how the strike vote is conducted. That is why about 90% of the members don't attend.

    smlsrtgrl: I'm with gsx1990....not anti-union, just anti greedy (Teamsters).
     
  15. spycmon

    spycmon Guest

    Proups, What dues?

    You mean Management paying for their Mercedes with the bonus you sweated for to boost their production numbers and all you got in return was a pat on the back (if that).
     
  16. proups

    proups Guest

    Spy: Bonus? Do you know what you are talking about? The people in management at UPS that I know about (and have turned down the opportunity to be one of them) gets a half-month check at Christmas and their stock - which they are not allowed to sell. The intelligent employees that have bought stock all get dividends, which will be .19 cents a share - so that is nothing we don't have. Their monthly salary, which is less than or equal to what a driver with about 5 hours overtime each week can make, is what they use to buy those nice cars you talk about. Like I told you earlier, you too can afford a nice car if you manage your money.

    The dues that I am talking about should be coming out of your check each week if you are a dues paying member. They go directly to the Teamsters, who use them in any way they desire (like buying vehicles). Explain to me and all the other UPSers paying the increased dues what Hoffa and his cronies will do with this money if we don't have a strike? I'm aware that people in right to work states do not have to be members, but some of us have to pay in order to work as a Teamster represented employee. Do you pay dues, or do you demand representation without paying dues?

    Your posts, and lack of information, never ceases to amaze me. I guess having people like you at UPS keeps the shop stewards and business agents in business, while the rest of us get the work done. If you hate UPS so much, then leave!
     
  17. spycmon

    spycmon Guest

    Questioning my intelligence and my information doesn't necessarily justify yours.

    "The people in management at UPS that I know about (and have turned down the opportunity to be one of them) gets a half-month check at Christmas"
    This was the bonus I was refering to. Do you get a bonus at Christmas time? I don't think so.

    "Like I told you earlier, you too can afford a nice car if you manage your money."
    Please tell me when you gave your financial expertise. Please note: Expensive cars to push some status driving ego isn't my style. I prefer to use my money where it counts.

    "The dues that I am talking about should be coming out of your check each week if you are a dues paying member." "Do you pay dues, or do you demand representation without paying dues?"
    I pay dues, if you understood my question it might of amused you in my wondering how does a picket crossing "person" (insert favorite union term here) still manage to willingly pay dues? Don't worry I know the answer. I apologize for you not having the benefit of a " right to work state" It must burn your butt. Here though, if you crossed that line you were released of your duty to pay dues. Get the picture?

    Everything I have posted is accurate and relative to my area and expertise. Yours may be different. I don't know what state you live in but know this, it's not the majority in how the union is viewed or participated. Especially, the lack of Union unity. I feel if you had better involvement from the union that maybe your mistrust in them would have been curbed a little more. Maybe not.

    Lastly, I never have meant any personal attacks on you directly, maybe some views but not you, for god sakes we both help this company go and yes I'm very proud of it but..... "I guess having people like you at UPS keeps the shop stewards and business agents in business, while the rest of us get the work done. If you hate UPS so much, then leave!" until you walk in my shoes in my town in my route in my truck keep to what you do know. And read a little more and you'll see I have made it known several times to what my real beliefs are. You actually think some unmotivated UPSer gives a damn about this site and what it stands for and what tools it provides to give some truth to that which might not be known. What motivates you to contribute to the site? Think that doesn't go the other way? We have passion and thank goodness most of it is from pride.

    Best regards, and good luck in your drive.
     
  18. stomlinson

    stomlinson Guest

    The year-end bonus is not related to production numbers. It is intended to provide some level of compensation for supervisors and managers due to the long hours worked during peak season. As salaried employees, they are not entitled to overtime pay. As a driver you are paid at time and a half for all hours worked over 8.0. Are you willing to work twelve hour days for eight hours of pay?
     
  19. spycmon

    spycmon Guest

    That depends. 12 hours of what I do or 12 hours of what you do. That's why you don't see salaried paid jobs in labor.
     
  20. buster

    buster Guest

    Front line oncar sups in my part of the country make less on an hourly basis then their drivers. Around here they work 70 - 80 hours a week.