- The International Brotherhood of Teamsters and UPS have begun hammering out bargaining agreements covering 250,000 workers, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. The current five-year contract expires at the end of July 2018.
- Drivers, package sorters and loaders, and operations and dock workers are covered in the current round of negotiations.
- Issues involving air mechanics will not be addressed within this contract, though it is of concern to the Teamsters.
With the terms of 250,000 jobs on the line, the UPS and Teamsters negotiations have much at stake.
UPS is doing its best to acquire workers, both seasonally and for permanent positions. In fact, the logistics handler is going so far as to offer not only retention bonuses of $150, but will boost that benefit to $200 if no work days are missed. However, the company's efforts to add staff haven't always gone smoothly, as when it sought to add golf carts to its fleet of delivery vehicles in Kentucky, only to face backlash from the Teamsters as well as established drivers. And for all its work in recruiting and hiring for delivery and sorting positions, the company's air maintenance workers remain in limbo due to an unresolved contract dispute.
Though still too early in the process to predict how smoothly the bargaining process may go, UPS has a lot at stake this time around. The company has not only been on a building spree in Salt Lake City and Dallas, but has also pledged to hire an additional 95,000 workers for peak season alone.
To risk any disruption in what's shaping up to be an extremely busy holiday would be to jeopardize the effort invested in systems already in place. Of course, the Teamsters, too, have the well-being of their members to consider, none of whom are likely to be pleased by complex negotiations. In short, it behooves both sides to come to an agreement with alacrity and fairness.