A collective sigh of relief was heard throughout the shipping world as news of a newly agreed upon contract between the Teamsters and UPS has emerged.
For the last 2 months, a dramatic negotiation between the Teamsters and UPS has been taking place. Further complicating the process was that, while the Teamsters management initially agreed to the UPS proposal, the contract was essentially voted down by the membership and a potential strike was in the offing.
As a result of the failed vote, a short extension of the existing contract was implemented. However, UPS began planning for a potential strike by limiting its intake of freight prior to the next vote.
A strike during the critical period between Thanksgiving and Christmas would have been disastrous, not only for UPS but for shippers who would need to scramble to find alternative carriers to make their deliveries.
The initial vote was rejected on a formality, due to the fact that not enough members voted.
The new contract seems to be similar to the initial offer. However, UPS workers were apparently able to extract a few concessions regarding the amount of subcontracted work, as well as wages and restrictions on pensions and vacation benefits.
Basic Outline of Contract
It seems that the basic outline of the initial offer still stands.
The initial offer from UPS included an increase in wages for both full-time workers, as well as a higher starting wage for part-time workers.
Given that the concessions extracted from UPS apparently included wages, it’s possible that the original wage increase offer was revised prior to being accepted.
A new driver category, “Hybrid Driver,” was proposed that would essentially take over weekend deliveries. The main reasoning behind this move is that UPS fully expects the volume of weekend deliveries to increase as a result of eCommerce.
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