Teamsters, carriers reach deal

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CHICAGO, Ill. — The Teamsters Union and the four major unionized trucking companies in the U.S. have reached a tentative deal covering 65,000 unionized workers.

The new deal was reached following a vote that gave the Teamsters a 95 per cent strike mandate if a new contract agreement was not reached. A current five-year contract expires March 31.

The new agreement will see drivers and cargo handles get an additional US$2.25 an hour over the next five years. The current average hourly wage is US$19.90. In addition, healthcare benefits remain the same. This includes no worker-paid premiums and no co-payments by union members for medical services. The average wage and benefits increase is 3.4 per cent over the term of the contract.

The agreement will cost affected carriers US$1.7 billion over five years.

In addition to securing wage, pension and healthcare benefits, the contract also calls for drives on city routes to have air-conditioned cabs, and outlaws subcontracting to Mexican carriers. It’s anticipated that smaller LTL carriers will adopt the terms of the contract reached with major carriers.

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