Trucking labor disputes: Teamsters win another FedEx victory, court orders benefits payback in misclass case

teamstersThe Teamsters have scored another victory at FedEx — the labor union’s second overall win at the parcel giant and second within the last month.

Drivers at FedEx Freight’s New Bunswick, N.J., terminal voted last week to join the Teamsters Local 701 with a 66-42 vote, following drivers from the Croydon, Pa., terminal, who voted to join the union Oct. 14.

The Teamsters have other campaigns at both FedEx and Con-way in the works across the country.

The Teamsters say the votes have already paid off, too, as FedEx Freight raised per-hour pay by 80 cents after the Croydon terminal filed for election. The carrier also ended its driver scorecard practice, the union says, in response to its efforts. 

After labor organization efforts began at Con-way this year, the mega carrier said it plans to increase driver pay by $60 million in 2015, among other improvements.


In other driver-labor news, the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement has awarded a Total Transportation Services truck driver $9,000 in unemployment benefits after a court ruled the driver was misclassified as an independent contractor.

The settlement stems from the roughly half-dozen driver strikes that have taken place at Los Angeles and Long Beach ports in the last year.

A Teamsters affiliated group, Justice for Port Truck Drivers, backed the strikes over what the truckers said were labor law violations.

JPTD said shortly before the July strike, carrier TTSI announced it would terminate leasing arrangements with drivers and they would have to provide their own trucks. It would fire truckers who did not sign new independent contractor agreements and withdraw wage theft claims with the DLSE.

The terminations were to be effective Aug. 1, but delayed to Sept. 1. On Aug. 29, drivers attempted to meet with the company to sign new leases, but were told to come back Sept. 2.

When they returned, TTSI said they would not be required to withdraw their claims. Some signed new lease agreements and were dispatched. While other drivers were waiting to sign, TTSI demanded they withdraw claims, then terminated more than 35 truckers who refused.

-Kevin Jones and Jill Dunn contributed to this report.