We have some great news out of Olympia! Representative Cyrus Habib's proposed legislation (HB 2152) that would lift the Labor & Industries requirement for taxi cab operators has just passed the State House of Representatives on a vote of 93-1!
The Western Washington Taxi Cab Operators Association (WWTCOA) and the Teamsters have been working hard to pass the bill since the start of legislative session on January 13. WWTCOA members testified at a Labor and Workforce Development Committee hearing on January 16, and dozens of drivers spoke to their representatives about the importance of the bill at our Teamster Lobby Day on January 28.
The next big fight will be in the Senate, where we will need to speak out in legislative hearings and meet with our State Senators. Under the bill, drivers would still have the option to participate in the State's L & I insurance program, but they could opt out if they so desired.
Teamsters Local 117 recycle and yard waste drivers at Republic's Bellevue facility showed their Seahawks colors this morning as they prepared to head out onto their morning routes. Team spirit at its finest! Let's do this - Go Hawks!
A big Seahawks playoff game was due to start, but that didn’t stop the crew at Graybar Electric from gathering at their Union hall to prepare for contract negotiations.
Graybar distributes electrical and communications products to businesses across North America. Teamsters 117 represents members at the company’s facilities in Seattle’s SODO district and in Renton. Members in the warehouse receive, store, select, pack, and ship company inventory.
Wondering what’s happening with our members in the taxi industry? Check out the new Fare Times newsletter.
In this issue you can read about:
- a generous donation by taxi drivers to the Northwest Harvest food bank;
- a new Taxi Ticket Program to help drivers who receive moving violations;
- a recent taxi political forum;
- taxi drivers' work to pass legislation in Olympia.
Check out the Fare Times here.
Teamsters 117 started the New Year off by giving back to the community.
On January 4, a team of Shop Stewards met up with John Scearcy, Local 117 President and Executive Assistant, to spend that cold winter morning volunteering at the Emergency Food Network’s repack project.
Their work involved repacking frozen cut corn, which had been donated in bulk, into two-pound, family-sized bags. Together, Jason Stepner, John Langenbach, Mike Reavey, Jason King and John Scearcy helped repack 6,400 pounds of frozen cut corn in a 3-hour shift.
Today, 31,000 Machinists will be voting on Boeing’s latest contract proposal. The vote will take place throughout the day, at multiple locations, and the results won’t be known until later tonight. Read more about today's vote here.
For Machinists, and the rest of the labor community, there is much at stake. Boeing has indicated that they will relocate production of the 777X to another state if the Machinists do not approve the offer. That offer, which includes a number of well-documented concessions, would strip away the workers’ defined benefit pension plan and replace it with a 401k plan.
Puget Sound taxicab operators made a special trip this Friday. The drivers traveled to Northwest Harvest, where they delivered a $3300 gift to the food bank in a show of solidarity and support of families in need this holiday season.
You’ll likely recall the 2011 reports of awful working conditions in Amazon fulfillment centers in Pennsylvania and elsewhere in the United States. Temperatures in some of the company’s warehouses back east rose above 110 degrees, causing workers to collapse and seek treatment for heat exhaustion.
The voters have spoken. SeaTac Proposition 1 was approved and certified by King County Elections after a recount last week. But the new law, which will raise the minimum wage for thousands of low-wage workers at SeaTac Airport to $15/hr and allow workers the opportunity to earn paid sick days, is now being challenged in court.
Teamster production workers and lab technicians, employed by Darigold, have overwhelmingly ratified a new labor agreement that provides wage increases, health care protections, and retirement security for 220 workers and their families. The contract vote took place on Sunday, December 8.
“Teamsters at Darigold showed tremendous solidarity and resiliency throughout the bargaining process,” said Tracey A. Thompson, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 117. “The strength of our members and our strong community partnerships made this deal possible.”