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Oct
2016
20

Teamsters Organize Two XPO Logistics Shops: “Workers Standing Up to this Corporate Bully”

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The Teamsters scored a couple victories in their ongoing battle to organize XPO Logistics. In a 72-49 vote last week, XPO warehouse workers in North Haven, Connecticut, became the first of the company’s warehouse workers to unionize in the United States:

“This is all about us workers standing up to this corporate bully and demanding fair wages, affordable health insurance and an end to the mistreatment,” employee Ted Furman said. “XPO’s CEO, Bradley Jacobs, had the audacity to come to our warehouse and tell us we don’t need a union, and then he returned just a couple days before the election. Well, Mr. Jacobs, we are now proud Teamster members!”

Meanwhile, in the Chicago suburb of Aurora, Illinois, 74 XPO drivers also joined the Teamsters union:

“Our victory is important to all of us because we have seen how XPO operates since taking over Con-way Freight,” said Cliff Phillips, a driver in Aurora. “XPO is treating us unfairly, denying us any voice on the job and just seems interested in the bottom line. But now we will fight back as Teamsters!”

The Aurora workers are seeking affordable and decent health care, retirement security, better working conditions and respect and dignity on the job. XPO is the second-largest freight brokerage provider and second-largest less-than-truckload carrier in North America.

These votes come on the heels of several court victories for the Teamsters, but it’s only the beginning of what promises to be a long fight:

A panel of appellate court judges in Chicago this week denied a FedEx Freight petition to decertify a Teamsters bargaining unit in Stockton, California. In September, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans rejected an XPO petition to overturn the 2014 vote in Laredo that organized the first Con-way Freight facility.

However, the two XPO election victories are only the fourth and fifth such wins at the company and the prior election victories all predate last year’s $3 billion acquisition of Con-way by XPO Logistics. According to XPO Logistics, none of the union employees at the three LTL terminals organized by the Teamsters since 2014 are working under a collective bargaining agreement.

As part of a broader push to expand representation, the Teamsters have plenty more elections and court battles in store.

Just this summer, three Teamsters were wrongfully arrested in Port Wentworth, Georgia, for distributing leaflets featuring information about XPO’s employee misclassification tactics. The leafleting campaign is a national effort.

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