Teamsters in the Education Dept at the Woodland Park Zoo celebrate their new contract.
Congrats! to our new members, Teamsters in the Education Dept. at the Woodland Park Zoo. The group voted overwhelmingly on Tuesday to ratify a first-ever union contract.
The group came together last year to win better wages, working conditions, and a voice on the job. They officially joined our union in August after an NLRB election vote.
"It took courage and determination for these workers to stand together in their union and win a voice," said John Scearcy, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters 117. "Let's congratulate them on their first Teamsters contract and welcome them into our union."
The Education Dept. group joins 60 Teamster zookeepers, who are also employed by Woodland Park Zoo.
Congratulations to the newest members of Teamsters Local 117! A group of Kennel Aides who work at the Tacoma Humane Society have voted unanimously to join our union.
The group got together last night to celebrate winning a voice at work.
Employees of the Woodland Park Zoo's education department filed for Teamsters 117 representation with the NLRB on August 4.
Today, over thirty employees in the education department at the Woodland Park Zoo petitioned for union representation with Teamsters Local 117, filing with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and delivering a letter to management requesting voluntary union recognition.
Workers in the education department are passionate about what they do, fostering respect for our natural world and conservation leadership through educational programs that inspire our community to learn, care, and act.
"I am excited to form our Union..."
“I am excited to form our union because I love the Zoo’s mission, and the staff I work alongside with who bring that mission to life everyday deserve respect and support,” said Kristi Dodds, a Zoomazium Coordinator who has worked at the Woodland Park Zoo for 16 years.
After winning union representation, the education department employees will select a bargaining committee to negotiate their first collective bargaining agreement, after which they will join over 60 zookeepers, vet techs, and warehouse workers at the Woodland Park Zoo who already have a voice on the job as members of Teamsters Local 117.
Congratulations on taking this step, and welcome to your union!
David Niles, a correctional specialist at CRCC, is grateful to be re-joining the union.
Correctional Specialist, David Niles, of the Coyote Ridge Corrections Center (CRCC) in Connell is grateful to join the ranks of Teamsters 117 once again.
In his previous position at the facility, he was a member of our union, but he promoted out of the bargaining unit. Now, his correctional specialist group, along with 10 other DOC groups have voted to join forces with Teamsters Local 117, with two more waiting for PERC certification.
That makes 11 new groups at the DOC over the last two years!
Niles writes of his experience below:
Here is the list of all of the new Department of Corrections bargaining units that have joined our union since 2015:
- Registered Nurse 3
- Administrative Assistant 3
- Marine Department
- Recreation & Athletics Specialist 4
- Correction Specialist 2 (Supervisory)
- Correction Specialist 2 (Non-Supervisory)
- Occupational Nurse Consultants
- Administrative Assistant 3 (CBCC)
- Correction Specialist 1
- Correction Specialist 3
These groups contain hundreds of new members who are standing together in their union to improve their wages and working conditions and to gain the benefits and protections of a Teamsters contract.
Let's be sure to welcome them to Teamsters Local 117!
Chad Young is one of our new members at the state's Department of Corrections.
Another group at the state's Department of Corrections has joined Teamsters 117.
Seventy-one Correctional Specialist 2s were certified as Teamsters on Tuesday, March 7 by the Public Employment Relations Commission (PERC).
That makes five DOC groups that have joined our Union or are awaiting PERC certification since December.
"We now have the backing of a whole organization rather than just being a lone voice."
"Gaining representation brings a lot of value," said Chad Young, a CS2 who helped with the organizing drive. "Now we have the backing of a whole organization rather than just being a lone voice."
Chad and his co-workers were motivated by a growing pay disparity between his CS2 group and members of the Teamsters bargaining unit. Represented DOC staff performing similar work were receiving $300 more a month.
The only difference was that he was responsible for training staff while they were training offenders."I felt like the state was putting less money toward training staff than training offenders," he said.
At first some of his co-workers were hesitant about joining the Union, but when he showed them the pay gap, they got on board.
Now that the group is certified, they will have a chance to voice their priorities for bargaining, which is expected to take place in the coming weeks.
"I want to welcome these new members to our Union," said John Scearcy, Local 117 Secretary-Treasurer. "We look forward to ensuring that their rights are protected and that they receive the outstanding representation they deserve."
Union supporters in the for-hire industry at a Seattle City Council meeting in August last year.
Uber has spent the better part of two years trying to stop their drivers from having a voice.
They have repeatedly blocked their drivers’ right to unionize in the courts, run anti-Union ads in the Seattle Times and during a nationally-televised Seahawks game. They even have their own podcast aimed at silencing drivers.
Instead of raising standards for drivers who have repeatedly decried the company’s lack of transparency, poor working conditions, and low pay, Uber has focused its efforts on making sure drivers have as little control as possible over their own livelihoods.
Uber’s most recent attempt to silence their drivers involves a letter to the City of Seattle contesting our Union’s application to become a qualified driver representative under the City’s new collective bargaining law.Read more
Local 117 members at the Sysco warehouse in Kent send solidarity and encouragement to their Brothers and Sisters in Spokane.
Members of Teamsters 117 who work in the food service industry are sending messages of solidarity to their Brothers and Sisters who work at the Sysco warehouse in Spokane.
The Spokane warehouse group is fighting to win their Union and become members of Teamsters Local 690. A National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election is scheduled for this Thursday, March 2.
"I stand with my Brothers and Sisters in Spokane to have a voice at work."
Last night, dozens of our members at Food Services of America and the Sysco in Kent shared photos with signs that read, "This Teamster stands with the Spokane Sysco warehouse" and "Vote YES!" Many offered words of encouragement:
“I have been at the bargaining table and have seen first-hand what this Company has proposed and would implement if we were not Union here in Seattle," said James Borsum, a Teamster 117 member who works for Sysco in Seattle. "I stand with my Brothers and Sisters in Spokane to have a voice at work.”
Yesterday, Sysco sent a letter to their employees' homes trying to convince them to vote against the Union.
"These kinds of tactics are typically used to try to intimidate employees and frighten family members," said John Scearcy, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 117. "Sysco should refrain from this kind of ugly campaigning, respect the democratic process and their employees."
New Teamsters who work in Transdev dispatch: Eric Nyberg, Lana Bonilla, and Chelsie Brumit.
Let's congratulate and welcome a group of 14 Transdev dispatchers who voted to become Teamsters in an NLRB election on February 10.
The dispatchers join 260 drivers at Transdev who became Teamsters in 2015. The drivers won their first Union contract last July.
"We are excited to welcome the Transdev dispatchers to our Union," said John Scearcy, Local 117 Secretary-Treasurer. "By joining Teamsters Local 117, they have the strength and unity of 16,000 members standing with them. We look forward to sitting down with the group to establish their priorities for bargaining so that we can work together to negotiate a strong Teamsters contract."
The dispatchers' Union Representative, Carrie Barnett, has scheduled demands meetings with the group on Wednesday, March 1 and Saturday, March 4.
Eighteen DOC employees who maintain and operate the McNeil Island ferry joined our Union on Dec. 10.
More groups of unrepresented staff at the Department of Corrections are building power and organizing to join Teamsters.
Eighteen ferry workers who operate and maintain the fleet of vessels that service McNeil Island joined our Union last December. Overwhelming majorities of three other groups – the Correctional Specialists 2s, the Occupational Nurse Consultants, and the Recreational Specialist 4s – have recently filed petitions for certification with the Public Employees Relations Commission (PERC) and are awaiting a ruling from the agency.
The ferry workers are unique in that they were previously represented by another Union. After a turbulent decertification process in 2015, they endured a tough stretch of nearly a year and a half without representation.
“There was a lot of uncertainty, and we lost a lot of benefits. We tried to encourage each other and keep a positive attitude, but it was pretty sketchy for a while,” said Brian Carrigan, a senior deck hand with nearly 10 years of state service.
Carrigan and co-worker, George Luttrell, explained the perils of losing their rights under their contract.
“We lost our clothing allowance and a personal leave day – the State took that away from us,” Luttrell said. The group also lost their right to overtime after eight hours and their right to have sick and annual leave count as compensable hours when calculating overtime.
As much as the lost benefits, the group felt the daily insecurity of not having a voice at work. “It was hard for a while. I feel like a weight has been lifted off of my shoulders,” said shipwright supervisor, Gary Taimanglo.Read more
Over the last two years, over a thousand new members have joined Teamsters Local 117 and our numbers continue to grow.
Today we just received word from the Public Employment Relations Commission (PERC) that the agency has officially certified a petition filed on behalf of 18 employees in DOC's Marine Department to become Teamsters.
These new members operate the ferries that service McNeil Island. They are Ferry Operators, Ferry Operator Assistants, Marine Engine Mechanic Supervisors, and Shipwright Supervisors.
They came to our Union seeking competent, professional representation and a voice.
They will add strength to our DOC bargaining unit and to our Union as a whole. Please welcome these new Teamsters!