The 1,400 Teamster mechanics who maintain UPS planes have authorized a strike by a vote of 90 percent. Contract talks will continue later this month. “I hope this sends a clear message to the company that the membership is behind us,” Bob Combine, president of Teamsters Local 2727 told the press.
Management has mocked our union and the strike vote calling it “an internal gesture” and “contract posturing with no legal significance whatsoever.”
Until the talks officially break down and the union endures at least one cooling-off period, a strike would be illegal under the Railway Labor Act, the anti-union, Depression-era law that covers Teamster airline mechanics at UPS.
UPS is gunning for more concessions. Management got big givebacks in the 2008 UPS master contract and wants more of the same from Teamster airline mechanics. Specifically, UPS wants to outsource some maintenance work and cut members’ benefits.
Teamster airline mechanics have leverage. The Hoffa administration needs to use it and finally tell UPS management that “The concessions stand is closed.”
Click here to read a press report on the strike vote from Reuters