(Pictured, the Teamsters Picketing)
After contentious negotiations, United Parcel Service (UPS) and the Teamsters Union reached a tentative agreement avoiding an all out strike that could have begun as soon as next week. A labor strike could significantly inhibit the supply chain that USA consumers and businesses heavily rely on.
Teamsters President Sean O’Brien lauded the new agreement in a statement saying, “This contract sets a new standard in the labor movement and raises the bar for all workers.”
UPS CEO Carol Tomé agreed saying, “Together we reached a win-win-win agreement on the issues that are important to Teamsters leadership, our employees and to UPS and our customers. This agreement continues to reward UPS’s full- and part-time employees with industry-leading pay and benefits while retaining the flexibility we need to stay competitive, serve our customers and keep our business strong.”
Details of the UPS Teamsters National Master Agreement include:
- Historic wage increases. Existing full- and part-time UPS Teamsters will get $2.75 more per hour in 2023, and $7.50 more per hour over the length of the contract.
- Existing part-timers will be raised up to no less than $21 per hour immediately, and part-time seniority workers earning more under a market rate adjustment would still receive all new general wage increases.
- General wage increases for part-time workers will be double the amount obtained in the previous UPS Teamsters contract — and existing part-time workers will receive a 48 percent average total wage increase over the next five years.
- Wage increases for full-timers will keep UPS Teamsters the highest paid delivery drivers in the nation, improving their average top rate to $49 per hour.
- Current UPS Teamsters working part-time would receive longevity wage increases of up to $1.50 per hour on top of new hourly raises, compounding their earnings.
- New part-time hires at UPS would start at $21 per hour and advance to $23 per hour.
- All UPS Teamster drivers classified as 22.4s would be reclassified immediately to Regular Package Car Drivers and placed into seniority, ending the unfair two-tier wage system at UPS.
- Safety and health protections, including vehicle air conditioning and cargo ventilation. UPS will equip in-cab A/C in all larger delivery vehicles, sprinter vans, and package cars purchased after Jan. 1, 2024. All cars get two fans and air induction vents in the cargo compartments.
- All UPS Teamsters would receive Martin Luther King Day as a full holiday for the first time.
- No more forced overtime on Teamster drivers’ days off. Drivers would keep one of two workweek schedules and could not be forced into overtime on scheduled off-days.
- UPS Teamster part-timers will have priority to perform all seasonal support work using their own vehicles with a locked-in eight-hour guarantee. For the first time, seasonal work will be contained to five weeks only from November-December.
- The creation of 7,500 new full-time Teamster jobs at UPS and the fulfillment of 22,500 open positions, establishing more opportunities through the life of the agreement for part-timers to transition to full-time work.
- More than 60 total changes and improvements to the National Master Agreement — more than any other time in Teamsters history — and zero concessions from the rank-and-file.
California Representative and Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi issued a statement after the announcement of a labor agreement between the Teamsters and UPS. She said,
“Congratulations to the Teamsters on the remarkable success of their negotiations, bearing fruit in an exciting and historic agreement with UPS.
“UPS has been a union house for more than a century and remains the only national private delivery service with a unionized workforce. UPS earnings grew at the height of the pandemic. Now, this agreement will share that success with the workers whose packing, lifting and delivering met the needs of America’s families and made those profits possible.
“In my conversations with leadership of the union and the company, it was clear that both sides were committed to achieving an agreement that respects workers — and the agreement announced today reflects that commitment. In times of extreme heat, the drivers will have air conditioning in their vehicles to help keep them safe. In recognition of the importance of part-time workers, this agreement will secure for them benefits and increased pay that are long overdue.
“Today’s announcement reaffirms this truth: organized labor is the backbone of our economy and our Democracy. It is my hope that this success will not only benefit the 340,000 Teamsters at UPS — but will provide a model for achieving gains for workers across the industry as well.”