Once again, good things are happening! The Teamsters and UPS reach a tentative deal, the IRS comes for “delinquent millionaires,” and another state guarantees free school lunches.
All this and much more in this week’s edition of You Love To See It below, a weekly feature reviewing good news, progress, and action steps that’s one of the many features available only to Lever supporting subscribers.
Special Contract Delivery
Amid a looming strike deadline, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters union and United Parcel Service (UPS) reached a tentative contract agreement to avert a 340,000-person work stoppage, at least temporarily. UPS employees had been requesting pay raises to match UPS’s record profits, air conditioning in trucks, and higher pay for part-time workers. A work stoppage at UPS would have been the nation’s largest strike in decades and could have negatively affected the U.S. economy, devastating the retail industry.
UPS is a $100-billion-dollar company that moves a quarter of the nation’s parcels. Its annual profits are close to three times what they were before the pandemic, and the company returned about $8.6 billion to shareholders in the form of dividends and stock buybacks in 2022. According to their financial filings, UPS anticipates they will repurchase approximately $3 billion in shares this year. Meanwhile, many UPS employees who served as frontline workers saw pay cuts.
A major sticking point in labor negotiations has been higher pay and more stable employment status for part-time workers, who make up more than half of the company’s unionized workforce.
In a press statement about the new deal, the union announced major wage increases for both full- and part-time UPS Teamsters. The Teamsters also delivered accelerated pay raises for part-time workers, bumping their hourly pay from $15.50 to $21 immediately, and up to a starting hourly rate of $23 by the end of the contract. Full-time workers will average $49 an hour.
“UPS has put $30 billion in new money on the table as a direct result of these negotiations,” declared Teamsters President Sean O’Brien, who was elected in 2021 on a reform platform. “We demanded the best contract in the history of UPS, and we got it…. We’ve changed the game.”