As I’m writing this letter to you the days are getting shorter, the nights getting colder, I hope everyone had an enjoyable summer and got the chance to vacation with family and friends.
The last issue of the Local 776 Review contained an article on the growth of Union membership in 2017. I’m happy to report that at Local 776 the same is true. Thanks to tireless and aggressive work by the Local’s organizer, Mark Cicak, our Local continues to build Teamster Power. Please see the article on organizing on page 7 of this issue for more details. While the recent Supreme Court Decision in the Janus vs. AFSCME case is a hindrance to organizing the Local Union is committed to meeting the challenge head on; continuing to fight for workers to have a voice in the work place.
As we move into the Holiday Season a Community Services project of the Local Union comes to the forefront. Again this year the Local is collaborating with the York County WIC program (Women, Infants, Children) to provide a “Christmas for Kids” party. This project helps some of the most needy families in the York County area have a brighter Christmas for their kids. Full details on the party can be found on page 1. Please find it in your hearts to help in any way that you can by supporting this worthy project for these kids.
This past year has been busy with ongoing negotiations for three national contracts, UPS, UPS Freight, and ABF. While these negotiations received most of the attention on our website rest assured that no matter the size of your bargaining unit the Local Union quickly addressed any issues that were brought to our attention with the same dedication and commitment you have come to rely on from us.
November 6th is Election Day in Pennsylvania. This election cycle a Governor will be chosen as well as State and Local officials. This year Senator Scott Wagner is challenging Governor Tom Wolf. Make no mistake Wagner has long been a foe of organized labor, repeatedly stating that it is his goal to make Pennsylvania a right to work state. There is no secret that in any state when right to work is implemented, wages drop and benefits drop. At a right to work rally held on the state capitol steps in July of 2017 Governor Wolf stood proud with organized labor and spoke out against the legislation at the rally, denouncing the attack on working Pennsylvanians.” There is a concerted effort by many at the national and state level to damage working men and women's ability to fight for wages they deserve, benefits they have earned, and protections that are fair,” Gov. Wolf said. “The constant threat of legislation like right to work, like paycheck protection, is an assault on the market and the economy. Any legislation that makes it harder for employees to organize in turn makes it harder for businesses to provide quality products and services to their customers.” This is an important election for working people please let your voice be heard; make your vote count; vote your job, your paycheck, and your conscience.
The Local Union continues to strive for open communication with the members. The Local’s website is update frequently with news and events of importance to the members. Additionally the website is being used to send E-mail alerts to the membership, whether to the membership in general or to specific bargaining units as the need arises to disseminate information rapidly. Members continue to register with the website as a Local 776 member to be included in the E-mail alert system. Our website continues to receive increased traffic across the Internet and has been used by workers looking to form a Union at their workplace to contact us. The Local Union regularly mails our newsletter, “The Local 776 Review” to all members to keep them informed on the news, events, and activities at the Local.
Negotiating and enforcing your collective bargaining agreement remains at the forefront of what we do, along with everything else we do at the Local Union from training seminars, educational seminars, to fellowship events are geared toward the members. Take a moment to reflect on your life, what you have accomplished for yourself and your family, what being a Teamster means to you, and be proud to be a part of our great Union: The International Brotherhood Of Teamsters!
Ed Thompson, President Treamsters Local 776