UPS has reached a tentative agreement for new five-year contracts with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters covering its small package and freight businesses.
The new contracts must now be approved by UPS’ union employees. The current contract, which covers 250,000 UPS employees, expires July 31.
"These agreements are a 'win-win-win' for our people, customers and shareholders,” UPS’ chief executive officer, Scott Davis, said in a statement. "The fact that we have reached agreements well before our current contracts expire is a testament to the skills and determination of all those involved in these negotiations."
According to the group Teamsters for a Democratic Union, precise details of the new contracts are not quite clear due in part to a lockdown on information and also to the fact that some negotiations are ongoing. Information about production harassment and excessive overtime has not been released by the Teamsters or UPS.
Details that are available include a $1-per-hour increase in annual pension and healthcare contributions, a stipulation that was also included in the last contract, and the movement of 140,000 workers into Teamster-controlled healthcare plans. Hourly wage increases are said to be 70 cents for the first three years and 90 cents annually for the remainder of the deal. Part-time employee pay, which was reportedly falling below minimum wage in some areas, will be increased. More than 2,000 of these part-time positions will be turned into full-time jobs.
"This is a great day for the Teamsters Union," Teamsters’ General President Jim Hoffa said in a statement. "At a time when workers and their pay, benefits and working conditions are under attack by corporate America, we have succeeded in improving the lives of our hardworking and dedicated UPS and UPS Freight Teamsters for years to come. These tentative agreements are shining examples to the entire country of a hugely successful unionized company that thrives because of its workers."
Representatives from local unions are expected to meet soon to review the agreements, and members will then vote on the deals by mail ballot. If ratified, the new contract will go into effect on Aug. 1. - Jon Ross