Southern California Teamster
By Phil Cooper, Secretary-Treasurer
Local Union 896
July 8, 2014
As a reminder to all of our members, summer is in full swing! please remember to use sun block, stay hydrated and always keep an eye on the children around pools, lakes and beaches.
As you have undoubtedly heard the negotiations with Anheuser-Busch/InBev have finally concluded. All twelve breweries, including both Local 896 facilities located in Van Nuys and Fairfield, fully recommended the five-year agreement. What began in November of 2013 finally ended six months later. We knew entering these negotiations would be completely different to what we had experienced in the past, as these were the first negotiations with the new owners. All eleven Locals representing the twelve different Budweiser breweries met and negotiated under the leadership of the IBT Brewery Conference. Special thanks to David Laughton and his staff for their great leadership during these tough negotiations. It was very apparent to the Company that the Teamsters were ready to do what ever was necessary to provide their membership with the best possible offer. The results were increases to both hourly wages and monthly Health and Welfare contributions, a sizeable performance base incentive program, and a $2500.00 signing bonus. The Company also renewed its commitment to keep all twelve breweries open for the duration of the new agreement. The negotiation team of Mike Fitsimones and Tim Hoffman representing Brewing, Lonnie Aguinaga representing Stores, Alberto Hernandez representing Bottling/Warehouse and Dan Birch representing the Laboratory Technicians, were very instrumental in securing us the best final offer possible.
We still continue to go round and round with Coca-Cola Sylmar over the company’s intent to implement an Engineered Labor Standard in this facility. We have filed an unfair labor practice against this company with the National Labor Relations Board. We have also filed a grievance over their unwillingness to negotiate with us fairly on this issue. Teamsters Local 896 believes that Coke Sylmar does not have the legal or contractual right to implement an Engineered Labor Standard and we believe this will more than likely be settled in an arbitration. I will continue keep you informed of the progress with this issue.
There are many important elections this year at both the state and federal level, we will continue to encourage our members and their families to register to vote! Your vote can and will make a difference. We also want to remind our members that most of our contracts have D.R.I.V.E. language. You can donate as little as $1.00 per week through payroll deduction and this money will be used to fight the War on Workers. The attack on Unions and the middle class is not going to end, so we all must do our part to protect our way of life. We must continue to educate our family and friends on the benefits of being a Teamster. If you know of anyone that wants to bring the Union to their shop, please contact the hall and we will take care of the rest.
Congratulations go out to all of our recent retirees including, Ramon Nevarez Bud Sylmar Distributor, Kathy Hudson MillerCoors Brewery and Mike Cohan Budweiser Brewery.
Special thanks to recent retiree John Stifel. John joined Local 896 in April of 1972 working at Coca-Cola Los Angeles. But most of us remember Johnny working at the hall for the last fifteen years as the dues collector. On July 9, 2014 Johnny made it official and became a retired member of Local 896. Our best wishes, thanks and a happy retirement go out to the guy we will always affectionately call “John the Dues Dude”.
Good luck wishes to Stacey Johnson, Office Manager of Local 896. Stacey has decided to move on to what we all hope will be bigger and better things. Thanks for all you have done for our Local and good luck in whatever you do.
Local 896 history found on google-old issues of Teamster magazines yield some surprising stories. A short story from the March 1977 issue of The International Teamster shows two TV stars becoming honorary Teamsters. Actresses Cindy Williams and Penny Marshall, also know as Laverne and Shirley, were given honorary memberships in Teamsters Local 896 by then Secretary-Treasurer Guy Lewis. President of Teamsters Joint Council 42 Pete Kurbatoff was also there when the two mythical brewery workers were presented their honorary membership.
Quarterly dues and or assessment increases effective July 1, 2014 are as follows: AB Beach Cities - $183.00, Quality Logistics - $177.00, AB Van Nuys – 255.00, AB Van Nuys Weekenders/Seasonal - $120.00, Miller Clerical - $237.00, Miller Production/Brewing - $249.00, Miller-temps - $138.00, AB Sylmar - $189.00, Ace Beverage - $180.00, Allied Beverage - $198.00. Payments may be mailed to: Local 896, 3303 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 300, Los Angeles CA 90010
The next union meetings will be held on Sunday, July 27th. Please see the Local 896 back page notice for your branch time and location. Hope to see you there!
The war on workers continues...
In the last few years, companies have tried their best to sabotage the pay, benefits, and work life of Teamsters all over the country.
To find out more, click here.