The new issue of your Teamsters South Sound newsletter is now available. The newsletter focuses on our members in the public sector who work in greater Pierce County.
In this issue, you'll find news about how more and more Teamsters are giving back to their communities through their Union involvement.
You can also read about librarians at the Tacoma Public Library are fighting for a more secure retirement and about the important work of our members at the Tacoma Pierce County Health Department.
View a PDF of your Teamsters South Sound newsletter. For print copies, talk to your Business Representative.
We will be starting total compensation bargaining for all Teamsters at King County this fall and it's important that your voice is heard.
Please complete the following survey by Friday, September 18th at 5:00 pm:
Your completed survey will help your Union bargaining team develop meaningful proposals that reflect your concerns.
The first meeting of the bargaining team is on Thursday, September 10th from 12-1:30 p.m. in Chinook Room 123. We will be providing regular updates throughout the bargaining process.
In the month August, members of Teamsters 117 donated several trunk loads of school supplies for kids headed back to school.
The Back-To-School Drive was sponsored by the Teamsters Pacific Northwest Black Caucus. Members were able to donate in their shops or at an event held on August 22.
Donations were made to groups in both King and Pierce counties.
"You're awesome! We never expected this much in supplies," said a representative from the Rotary Boys and Girls Club in a voicemail. "This is going to serve at least 1500 kids, so thank you so much!"
Thanks to everyone who donated. Your contributions will ensure that more kids in our communities can return to school well-equipped and ready to learn!
Upcoming Coalition of Unions Negotiations for represented members at King County.
Who is the Coalition?
The Coalition of Unions at King County is made up of over 5,000 Union members at King County. You and your Union are a part of this organization. Through solidarity, the Coalition increases our bargaining power to improve wages, benefits and job security. The Coalition of Unions will be the organization through which we bargain Total Compensation.
What is Total Compensation?
Teamsters Local 117 members voted and approved the Coalition Agreement last year, which obligates Local 117 to negotiate all compensable items through Coalition negotiations. The agreement expires at the end of 2016. We are now gearing up to negotiate the next agreement, called Total Compensation.
Julie Yust is a Shop Steward and Drug Addiction Treatment Counselor at the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department. She and her co-workers at the TPCHD provide counseling services for opiate dependent individuals. Opiates are the fastest growing drug of dependency in the United States. Julie says that the largest growing addict population is kids 18-24 years old.
1. Talk about your work at the Tacoma Pierce County Health Department.
I work with opiate dependent individuals seeking recovery services. We take away those cravings through medication and along with the medication we provide counseling.
2. How can you assist someone who has substance abuse issues?
We work with them to reduce cravings, to stop usage, to change behaviors, and to establish support networks. Every person gets individualized service. They progress through treatment with the ultimate goal of working themselves off methadone and into a drug-free life.
Every child deserves school supplies, but not every family can afford to buy them.
That’s why Teamsters Local 117 is organizing a Back-To-School Drive, so that more kids in our communities can go to school well-equipped and ready to learn.
In the month of August, we’ll be collecting all sorts of school supplies – backpacks, markers, notebooks, pencils, crayons, rulers, scissors, glue stick, tape, erasers, you name it!
Working people are more anxious than ever about whether they will have enough money saved to enjoy a secure retirement.
With the median savings hovering around just $12,000 for people 10 years away from retirement, we all have good reason to be concerned.
Teamsters who work at the Tacoma Public Library are aware of this problem and they are taking it seriously. They want the ability to divert some of their own wages into the supplemental Teamsters pension.
It’s a smart idea and would help Tacoma librarians be more financially secure in retirement. The trouble is – the City of Tacoma is trying to block the librarians’ request. Even though several other groups at the City have the Teamsters pension in their contracts, the City doesn’t want librarians to enjoy the same right.
Alejandra Calderon understands that giving a little bit of your time can go a long way.
Growing up, Alejandra benefited from the Proyecto Saber program through her school. This program helps Latino students graduate from high school, and aspires to help them get into college.
Alejandra had been a Proyecto student since elementary school, and knows the impact this program had on her life. She is determined to move it forward and help today’s students go on to bigger and better things.
She does this by giving the students and the program something they need as much as funding – her time.
More Good News for Teamsters at King County!
The Protected Fund Reserve is officially at $34.2 million as of the end of 2014, up over $9 million from the original seed of $25 million.
The experts are predicting that the Protected Fund Reserve will be just shy of $38 million at the end of this year, and over $39 million by December 31, 2016 which is the last day of the current JLMIC agreement. We will be negotiating a new agreement for 2017 and beyond next year as part of a total compensation bargaining process.
Through 2016, this means: no premium share, and no changes to the important plan provisions such as co-payments, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums.
Over the past several months, Teamster women and their families have been giving back to our communities in meaningful ways.
Through volunteer events sponsored by our newly-organized Women’s Caucus, Local 117 Teamsters spent a Saturday in May helping out at the Emergency Food Network’s (EFN) Mother Earth Farm near Puyallup, and then another Saturday in June working at the EFN warehouse in Lakewood.