- Teamsters Union Director of Organizing Jeff Farmer spoke about the power of collective bargaining in the current job landscape, in particular how the rise of e-commerce has impacted job security, DC Velocity reported.
- Currently, only 6.4% of the American private sector workplace is unionized. Widespread confusion and concern exists among workers in regards to job security and legal rights within the supply chain, with the greatest uncertainty revolving around the right of potentially independent contractors to organize.
- Outsourcing and employee misclassification are two areas where labor law has not kept pace with corporate practices. The trucking industry in particular has been hurt with misclassification, as independent contractors had been misclassified as owner-contractors, thereby denying them certain protections and benefits.
For 114 years, the Teamsters and labor have mostly gone hand in hand. Currently their membership stands at 1.4 million, with half a million retirees and 1,900 affiliates. But they have frequently been at odds with right to work laws, and the legal battles are significant.
A recent lawsuit went against the Teamsters this week, marking another instance of the current popularity of Right to Work laws. Eight UPS and Walt Disney World workers sought to withdraw their Union memberships. According to records, their efforts were either ignored or delayed while their weekly dues continued. Judge Michael Rosas ruled in favor of the workers, ordering the dues refunded with interest.
The eight workers were represented by the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, an opponent of union representation and supporter of the National Right to Work law, in which workers maintain the right to opt out of paying union dues despite retaining representation through place of work rights, wherein a majority of union members requires membership for all. The Right to Work law is enjoying a resurgence under the new administration, which was not supported by the Teamsters in the 2016 election.