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UPS, Teamsters agree to 55 noneconomic contract issues

Negotiations over wages, benefits and controversial 2-tier pay model next

Talks between UPS and the Teamsters collapsed early morning Wednesday.(Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)

UPS Inc. and the Teamsters union have agreed to terms on 55 noneconomic issues in bargaining over a new master contract, but the hard work has just begun.

Among the changes are the installation of air conditioners in package cars and other vehicles purchased after Jan. 1, 2024. Another requires that drivers not be forced to work more than 60 hours over a 70-hour workweek, though they could volunteer to do so.

A third requires UPS (NYSE: UPS) to give the union 24 hours’ notice before a supervisor does a ride-along with a driver. A fourth designates areas for subcontractors to operate and requires them to leave the property after certain designated times.

In addition, UPS may not subcontract feeder work if an available worker is laid off or is working out of classification.

The next step is negotiation over wages, benefits and a controversial two-tier pay model, the most difficult part of the contract talks. The Teamsters submitted its economic proposal to UPS on Wednesday, and the union has made no secret it is seeking significant increases.

UPS must tread lightly if it thinks it can pass on added labor costs to the Teamsters in the form of what Dean Maciuba, head of U.S. operations for Crossroads Parcel Consulting, called “punishing rate increases” without thinking it could lose business. FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX), UPS’ chief rival, is transforming itself into a lower-cost service provider, which is a “serious threat to UPS on a 2nd front,” Maciuba said in a LinkedIn post.

However, FedEx executives said earlier this week that they have seen no material impact so far from concerns over a possible strike at UPS.

Speaking Wednesday night on a webinar, Teamster General-President Sean O’Brien painted a two-road scenario in which either UPS agrees to Teamster demands or the company doesn’t and the union goes on strike Aug. 1, one day after the current contract expires. “We will leave everything on the field,” O’Brien said, adding that “we have to be united. We are setting a tone for the entire labor movement in the country.”

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  1. Barbara Murray

    Progression over Regression. The workers shall grow with the company. Numbers don’t lie. Time/hours/commitment. Happy workers, equate to happy results mutually.

  2. Vincent Bello

    Pensions should be increased for everyone!
    There has to be serious penalty pay put into place for when UPS violates the contract for UPS to take the contract seriously

  3. Albert Fountain

    I dont know why all of this hate on FedEx. This has nothing to do with FedEx and only to do with UPS. Whether the strike happens or not it will be business as usual for the purple company.

  4. ka

    wait. so did the Contract negotiations “open alot of doors” or “produce no material impact”?

    Fedex is speaking out of both sides of its mouth.

  5. Luca Brasi

    Agreement should be reached, bump in pensions and pay raise with a bonus is my prediction. O’Brien is Old Guard establishment, just like Hoffa. He’ll leave with a handshake and the “briefcase”. UPS made a lot of dough the last few years, they’re prepared for a strike. Cash is King, No strike. If we learned anything from COVID, companies can shut down and start back up and not miss a beat. I’m close to the finish line, this will be my last contract. Just pay my pension.
    One last thing, the “Strike authorization vote “ was Cuba style vote. I actually thought it was funny how the union watched you fill out ballot. I’m sure nothing was counted but 97% got a nice ring to it.

  6. Marcus E Keesee

    What about the issue of the ground equipment on the property like the yard dog that move trailer around the yard we need ac in our yard dog.

  7. Midwest Teamster

    The two points regarding contractors are already in place and UPS flaunts them with impunity. These are two of numerous restrictions they have agreed to that local management simply ignores. Better be consequences for violating agreements they have made in this new language, or the contract will not pass. Enforcement language is on the lips of every single member I speak to.

    Regarding FedEx, this is satire, yes? Talk about lipstick on a pig. Dear shippers: better get out in front of rate increases because labor is not going to take less while you maintain or increase record margins during the next couple decades of near-shoring.

    Third, I received a text last night saying our negotiators walked out on the first day of economic talks because UPS showed up “unserious.”

    This is not a drill. Remember that Sean cannot impose a contract on us. Buckle up, summer has finally arrived in the Midwest and workers are restless.

Comments are closed.

Mark Solomon

Formerly the Executive Editor at DC Velocity, Mark Solomon joined FreightWaves as Managing Editor of Freight Markets. Solomon began his journalistic career in 1982 at Traffic World magazine, ran his own public relations firm (Media Based Solutions) from 1994 to 2008, and has been at DC Velocity since then. Over the course of his career, Solomon has covered nearly the whole gamut of the transportation and logistics industry, including trucking, railroads, maritime, 3PLs, and regulatory issues. Solomon witnessed and narrated the rise of Amazon and XPO Logistics and the shift of the U.S. Postal Service from a mail-focused service to parcel, as well as the exponential, e-commerce-driven growth of warehouse square footage and omnichannel fulfillment.