Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti facilitated a deal between approximately 120 nonunion truck drivers working for Total Transportation Services Inc., Green Fleet Systems LLC, and Pacific 9 Transportation Inc. at Long Beach and Los Angeles ports to end an “indefinite strike” and engage in a cooling off period. The workers agreed to end the strike, which had been ongoing for five days, after the companies agreed to accept them back without retaliation or signing away future rights. The drivers initially went on strike to end alleged unfair labor practices at the drayage farms. This is the fourth work stoppage by drivers from one of the three mentioned companies in the Los Angeles area in the past year.
UAW members picketed the UAW International offices in Detroit in response to the union’s failure to unionize VW’s Chattanooga plant. The failed VW organizing campaign will reportedly require a 25 percent union dues increase in Detroit. While UAW leadership denies the claims, union members have been quoted as stating that numerous members are prepared to leave the union.
PTC Alliance Corp. locked out 240 members of the United Steelworkers Local 3509 when the parties could not reach a new agreement after bargaining for six weeks. Thirty of PTC’s salaried employees took over the job duties of the union workers.
International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) members have been picketing since February 2013, when they were locked out of the Pacific Northwest Grain Handlers Association (PNGHA) Columbia River terminal after failing to reach a new collective bargaining agreement. On July 6, 2014, inspectors working for United Grain Corp. (one of three companies comprising the PNGHA) at grain ports in a Vancouver, Wash. terminal stopped crossing picket lines outside the terminal. Washington State Patrol troopers were sent to escort the grain inspectors into the terminal, but Gov. Jay Inslee (D) recently stopped the escorts, saying they were not facilitating negotiations as hoped. PNGHA and ILWU are continuing negotiations and calls for federal action have been made to replace the state inspectors.
Approximately 1,300 fast food workers at a Chicago-area convention passed a resolution to proceed with additional strikes and civil disobedience actions as part of a campaign to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour. On May 15, 2014, the campaign organized one-day walk-outs in 150 cities. There have been 11 walk-outs since the effort kicked off in November 2012 in New York. Employers impacted by the campaign include, among others, McDonald’s, Burger King, Yum Brands!, and Wendy’s.