Massive Layoffs At UPS A Big Win For The Union!

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Banks's Comment
member avatar

A common response I hear when talking about this is "Well, look what they did to YRC!"

But I think I heard that YRC was already on shaky ground.

Then you weren't paying attention to what was happening.

Yellow over leveraged themselves buying companies to expand their network. They were waiting for the current contract to expire, instead of opening it up to amendments, but when the economy started to tank and interest rates went up they couldn't wait and had to open the contract.

They needed to change work duties, set some seniority rules with dove tailing and following the work.

The teamsters said they'd be willing to open the contract, but wanted to discuss pay as well. Yellow said they couldn't afford to change pay rates, but would revisit it when the contract expired. They were running out of money and needed to integrate these companies fast. Union said no.

By the end of July, O'Brien was telling everybody that yellow was going under. Doesn't help with customer when they don't want their property behind locked gates.

Then yellow said we don't have the money for central pensions and benefits. O'Brien said pay or we strike. Yellow stopped picking up freight and cleared all their freight lanes by Friday evening anticipating a walk out. On Sunday night O'Brien says no strike central will give you extension. Damage already done.

My gut tells me O'Brien knew about the extension before announcing it and yellow could've kept moving freight, but once you stop and customers don't trust you... There's no coming back from that. O'Brien wanted to teach Hawkins who the bigger man was 30k people lost their jobs as a result.

The worst part is, if you talk to those former yellow employees the union isn't there to help them. No job leads or information on what's next. They are discarded like they didn't matter from the company and abandoned by the people they paid to protect their interest.

What keeps me away from UPS is I had a former driver for them tell me the only way to really drive for them is to start at the bottom,

Seniority rules come with the union. It's how it all works.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Banks's Comment
member avatar
Interesting. So, on his watch, in 2023, Brendan Whitworth allowed a marketing campaign that destroyed the company's brand and cost the company 3 BILLION DOLLARS in earnings and that number grows by the day because sales have not returned yet.

And that's my point. Greed and the need to make more will never go away. The unions can't do anything about that. The board decides CEO pay and they're all buddies that care about the same thing.... Lining their pockets.

Any corporation that adds more expenses will just raise prices to offset it. Fuel goes up, prices go up. Tolls go up, prices go up. Interest on loans go up, prices go up. They'll never eat the cost, so when does the bubble stop being inflated?

That's what has happened to American workers over the years. You guys just don't get what's being done to you, even when I give you one outrageous example after another.

There are a lot of union companies that don't pay well. Airport employees start at 10/hr in most places and I got a message on indeed offering my 17/hr to drive for a union outfit.

You point to the extreme success of athletes and UPS employees, while ignoring all the failures. There's a reason Amazon voted them out and XPO voted them out... They did nothing for them, but we're talking money every week

Unions had a place once in history, but they've become a corporation that's only interested in their benefit like all the ones they claim to be taking on to benefit common employees.

Banks's Comment
member avatar
I'm not even really complaining or griping. I'm just pointing out some of the inequities the working class face in our current workforce environment. It can't be changed by an individual. It takes representation by a collective multitude.

Those inequities will always exist. Unions can't change it. Yellow went under and their execs got bonuses on the way out. I'm sure they still hold a bunch of stock that will also pay them well once all their assets are liquidated and if they're successful in their lawsuit against the teamsters.

My question continues to be what do you expect a union to do regarding the inequities that exist? The answer from corporate is always a price increase or a reduction in quantity for the same price.

What is the end goal?

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Banks, I appreciate your insights. I do. But you are what they call black-pilled. Your answer to everything is, "It's hopeless. Nothing we can do. They win, we lose."

It's easy to see how someone could be persuaded to take that view of things. After all, most of the largest sources of money in the world use every ounce of technology and knowledge available to wage psyop campaigns that shape our thinking. They want us divided, weak, and hopeless, and I've seen it affect people I know well. It's even affected me at times, no question about it.

At some point I'd like to see you offer an idea instead of just shooting down hope. I get it, there's a history of corruption in unions. There's also a stellar history of fantastic improvements in every aspect of work for many generations of workers, the ones who literally built this country. Better wages, benefits, working conditions, hours, and more.

You don't like unions. Ok, then what do you propose we do?

Navypoppop's Comment
member avatar

It is incorrect in stating that all union jobs pay great. Only if your union company is paying their drivers under "The Master Freight Contract ". All union jobs will usually offer better benefits, overtime, etc.

I have worked under both the Master Freight Contract and individual company plans that were negotiated on a company to union Contract. In both cases the working conditions were always good.

All unions are not the same and drivers need to evaluate their own needs before they either agree for or against unions. My father was a very dedicated long time Teamster from the 1940s until his death and would back his beliefs. I personally belonged early in my career, layer off in mid 1970s and took a withdrawal card and re-entered in the mid 1980s when I moved to Florida until the job closed. I never again worked for Teamster job. To each his own.

Banks's Comment
member avatar
At some point I'd like to see you offer an idea instead of just shooting down hope. I get it, there's a history of corruption in unions.

I'm not though. In simply asked what can the union do to stop the board and the CEOs from lining their pockets? From buybacks that artificially increase stock price and make them even more money?

Like I explained earlier

Any corporation that adds more expenses will just raise prices to offset it. Fuel goes up, prices go up. Tolls go up, prices go up. Interest on loans go up, prices go up. They'll never eat the cost, so when does the bubble stop being inflated?

If asking that question makes me "hopeless", than we have different definitions of the word. I'm still waiting for somebody to tell me when the bubble stops getting inflated.

At some point I'd like to see you offer an idea instead of just shooting down hope. I get it, there's a history of corruption in unions.

I'd also like to see an idea instead of relying on one corrupt organization to correct another corrupt organization. That never works out.

Ok, then what do you propose we do?

I have no problem with the way things are. Maybe it's because it's all I know, but I made good financial decisions early and I'm comfortable. I don't sit around moping because Raj Subramaniam makes millions and I make 34/hr. To me, that's a miserable existence and pocket watching was always frowned upon when I was growing up.

But I do know unions no longer offer any real value to employees and they certainly don't do anything to close the gap between CEOs and employees. People work for what they're willing to work for. If I felt underpaid, I'd find another job or learn another trade. I can't fault a business owner for paying minimum wage if they're able to get employees at that pay rate. McDonald's doesn't pay 15/hr because they're kind. They pay it because that's the lowest number they can pay and still have a work force, but the caveat is the price of a big Mac today versus 10 years ago.

Businesses don't eat these costs, consumers do.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

There's a lot of truth to all sides of this argument. But it's time we address the 800 pound gorilla in the room...existing unions don't serve drivers and weather you are for or against the union, it simply will not accomplish what we need done. If it could have, it would have by now.

There is simply no way to attract sufficient numbers of drivers to a union as they presently exist. Too much corruption, too high of fees with little to nothing in exchange and they serve a small niche segment of the industry while leaving the bulk of drivers to languish under the boot of mega corporations.

I read up above that unions are seniority based. True, and again, another reason why we need to try something new that's actually old. The first unions were simple organizations made up of workers for workers. They didn't collect pension funds, didn't have CEOs, didn't lobby. They had one purpose.

The primary mission objective is to raise pay and raise benefits. It should have nothing to do with seniority. Either you perform well or you don't. Existing CPM pay structures work for that reason. They just need to be unilaterally raised. Same with hourly, same with percentage, really any and all types of pay.

HHG needs to be made illegal. Period. If the corporation can't bid it high enough, they shouldn't be in business.

Banks is correct, if we get paid what we should be, consumers will pay the price. But they will pay it. Eventually though, the market will dictate the prices. It will, by its nature cause the carriers to eat some profits and then also shippers and manufacturers to eat profits until an equilibrium is achieved. They will lower prices in order to stay alive in business.

We can continue to be tribal and hail our team, not much will change, or we can have some vision and force the change.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

I didn't expect you to have any solutions to offer, and that's because you're not looking for any. You've decided that having low expectations hurts less when you wind up with very little in the end, which you will, and allowing others to take advantage of you is ok as long as you don't mind, which they do.

I can say this: your attitude is much appreciated by some. In fact, the higher-ups could never pull off this caper if there weren't enough workers like yourself.

Seriously, Anheuser Busch put a boy dressed as a girl on their product. It cost the company tens of billions of dollars and destroyed their brand for years, but the CEO keeps his $40 million per year job. That's what they call leadership in this country???

wtf-2.gif

This only happens if enough of us roll over and play dead while management picks our pockets clean and laughs all the way to the bank as we go home with nothing. But the union at Anheuser-Busch was determined to get their fair share as well, and they did. If that guy can screw up and keep his $40 million job, then the company has enough money to give the workers a raise. Turns out both were true.

If everyone wanted a fair society and they were willing to stand up and do something about it, this problem wouldn't exist. But because they've convinced people like Banks that nothing can or should be done about it, a small number of people get to raid the company's coffers while everyone else watches their life's work amount to nearly nothing.

But I do know unions no longer offer any real value to employees and they certainly don't do anything to close the gap between CEOs and employees

Are you certain of that, Banks? Is that a fact in your mind? Because it's 100% false in the real world, which should greatly concern you. You've not only convinced yourself of a lie, but you've made it your mission to support that lie. I've made it my mission to help people understand things a little better, so let's see if I can help.

Here is the direct connection between the amount of money that goes to the upper 10% versus the percentage of people who belong to unions. As union participation has dropped (in red) over the years, more and more money goes to the upper 10% (in blue):

0788214001711537048.jpg

I started this conversation because unions racked up one win after another across the board in recent years, which is a proven fact, but those are inconvenient facts for you, aren't they? If unions are truly effective, it's hard to justify actively speaking out against them while more and more of the money you and your comrades rightly earned is being siphoned to the upper 10%, isn't it?

I saw a video yesterday that asked, "Why do so many smart people often get things wrong?" It talked about wokeism and how many intelligent people are going along with obviously ridiculous ideas.

What misleads people most of the time is that they not only accept certain ideas as facts without giving them proper consideration, but they turn those beliefs into their personal identity. Now, the search for truth is no longer their mission. Supporting and defending those beliefs is now their mission.

Our society is in this mess because too many people thought we could ignore the problem. So what if there's some unfairness in the world? Why stress out about it? Just ignore it and hope it doesn't become a bigger problem.

I've got news for any men who think this way. It is not ok to allow another man to take advantage of you. It is not ok to allow another man to treat you unfairly. It's not ok for another man to steal the fruits of your labor and force your kids to grow up with very little. Men are meant to be fighters. We're providers and protectors. Stand up and be men and fight! (you too, ladies!)

I have no problem with the way things are. Maybe it's because it's all I know, but I made good financial decisions early and I'm comfortable. I don't sit around moping because Raj Subramaniam makes millions and I make 34/hr. To me, that's a miserable existence and pocket watching was always frowned upon when I was growing up.

Banks, I totally get where you're coming from when you say, "Hey, my life is good. I'm fine with it. I'll just go along, get along, and not rock the boat." I also agree that you must choose your battles wisely.

But you have a wife and kids, right?

Look at that chart I just posted and several others I posted earlier in this conversation. Those charts are getting worse every year for workers. Your children will grow up to be the next generation of workers. If those charts continue in the same direction, your children won't own a house, a car, or most of the things we own today. As we speak, home ownership is out of reach now for 75% of Americans, and it continues to get worse. Something must be done, or they will reduce our standard of living to the poverty level.

You may have convinced yourself that it's ok to accept mistreatment as long as you do it with grace and dignity. You may believe that it's ok to allow others to walk all over you as long as you don't mind. But when they get older, your kids are going to ask some tough questions if they're forced to inherit a world that has less than what we have today. When they get older and look at the hopelessness of their financial situation and realize how good it used to be, they're going to want to know what happened. Why did we lose the incredible standard of living we used to have?

How are you going to justify doing nothing about it when banding together to fix the problem was the best shot we had? They're going to want to know why you didn't stand with others to right the wrongs and fix the injustices.

Banks, I am not questioning your integrity as a person or your abilities or devotion as a husband and a father. I can tell you care deeply about your family, and you take your responsibility seriously.

What I'm questioning is your acceptance of the situation as hopeless, your determination that unions can not improve it, and your willingness to do nothing about it.

Your kids have to live in the world you create. Paying your bills today is not the most important thing. Building the world your kids will inherit is what matters most. You don't have to be the man on the podium leading the masses to victory, but don't be that guy who refuses to see the situation for what it is and deal with it while it's still manageable. Don't be that guy who runs around telling everyone to give up on fighting for fairness, to accept less than you deserve, and to be thankful for what little you get from your rulers.

The situation is dire. It is not okay to say you won't fight for fairness because "Pocket-watching was frowned upon when I was growing up."

It was ok to think that way when you were a kid, but you're an intelligent man who can see the reality we face and deal with it any way you choose. Your kids will inherit the result of your efforts. I know you want the best for them, so think carefully about how you want to handle the challenges we face in our society.

We're the men of today. It's on us now. What will we do about it?

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
We can continue to be tribal and hail our team, not much will change, or we can have some vision and force the change.

I agree completely. We need ideas and a vision, and then we need to create the change we want to see.

We can't have people who give up and say it's hopeless or write it off as someone else's responsibility.

I find it interesting that I'm neither a worker nor a parent, yet I'm more willing to stand up and fight for a better future for workers than some workers who are parents!

There are no simple solutions to our society's troubles, but nothing great is ever easy. We live in an extremely wealthy and flourishing society. There's no reason we can't have a strong middle class, and we shouldn't let short-sighted, selfish little men take advantage of us.

BK's Comment
member avatar

I haven’t weighed in on this thread much because I’m a disillusioned idealist and don’t have the energy to think much about these issues.

I know that if I was putting together a debate team, I would try to recruit Brett, Banks and Davy. You guys are good!

This discussion is like debating whether Nero is a good fiddle player while Rome burns.

The reason the CEO people are at the top of the heap is because they all agree on two things: Money and Power. There are not that many of them, so it’s easier for them to form a united front and pursue their greed as a collective unit. Therefore, the existence of the so called “top 1 percent”.

Contrast that to everyone else who should make up a healthy middle class. Unity is far from possible because no one can agree on anything and any effort to form unity just falls apart due to yelling, fighting and name calling. It reminds me of the Bible’s description of society during the last days: “Not open to any agreement”.

Debating the viability of Unions is futile until there is a solution to the underlying and fatal problem, that nobody can agree on any one important issue anymore. In fact, I think it’s gotten so bad that many people will disagree with something solely on the basis is that it’s all they know how to do, disagree. Therefore, those who should be united as a middle class are fractured and, unlike the wealthy, elite class, they work from a position of weakness and not strength.

It’s like that in the political arena today. Do you want to succeed as a politician? Don’t have a brain? Easy, just disagree with everything and offer nonsensical reasons in support of your disagreement.

Am I cynical? Admittedly so. But as I said to begin this comment, I’m a disillusioned idealist. Any efforts I made in my life to change the status quo was like trying to demolish a brick wall with my head. And that explains the brain trauma. lol.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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