What is the Point of Unions?

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Jabber1990, Jul 16, 2016.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Pintlehook

    Pintlehook Road Train Member

    1,244
    1,922
    May 2, 2013
    0
    Not right at all. Sounds completely uneducated to me. Today's work environment mandates that a company run efficiently or that business will NOT survive. Also remember that the business agreed to whatever work rules that you deem make the employee "lazy".
     
    Dumdriver Thanks this.
  2. Truckers Report Jobs

    Trucking Jobs in 30 seconds

    Every month 400 people find a job with the help of TruckersReport.

  3. scottied67

    scottied67 Road Train Member

    10,716
    12,248
    Mar 14, 2010
    california norte
    0
    I'm a proud member of the PileDrivers Union out of Oakland CA. 26 years. Speaking to the laziness, it is a rare thing in the construction biz. On a piledriving rig you have a very small crew-- 3 to 4 people and a foreman. Then the crane operator and his or her oiler. The operation has to run safe and profitable. All the crew work like a family looking out for each other's back. If one person on the crew is not pulling their weight, they won't last long. It is difficult to fire people to be sure but nothing against laying people off due to lack of work. The worst thing is to be laid off while they are still hiring.

    I recall going to a union meeting back in the 90s, we had gotten a big payraise the year before and the Man was not happy about it. Most of the union guys were driving around in brand new pickups and living with their brand new wives in their brand new homes. Business agent gets up to do his monthly report and rails against the members who had gone soft on too much money. He said he got a call from a contractor asking the hiring hall to send out a welder to his job off the out of work list. BA sends the very next welder on the list in order to the job and the welder looks down in the muddy hole they want him to crawl down into the cofferdam and weld struts and walers for support to prevent this thing from caving in and burying everyone. Anyway, welder looks down in the mud and ankle deep water and says no way, there are better jobs out there and gets back on the out of work list. Now contractor is pissed off but more damaging to the piledriving union than that is, the contractor now has the right to go to another union namely the Laborers union to acquire a welder. Laborers union has a full training facility training their guys in welding, rigging, shoring etc even though they are forbidden to touch that kind of work in the master contract. But the Laborers are savvy, they know the other unions' members were growing fat and lazy and were ready to pounce on all sorts of work those other unions didn't want to do. Add to that the Man encouraged it because the classified "Unskilled Laborer" generally works for roughly $10 bucks less per hour than your 'Skilled' union craftsmen .

    Back inthe 60's the piledrivers lost shoring jobs, the sort where H beams are driven into the ground about 8 feet apart and 4x12 timbers are cut and placed in the webs to hold back the earth temporarily. Piledrivers considered it too 'dirty' and hard work. Laborer came along and said he'll do it. Why? because it gets his foot in the door for 'skilled' work-- handling a chainsaw, using a tape measure, and hammer and nails etc. Plus any Union knows the more members you have working rather than sitting at home means more dollars going directly to that union's trust funds-- retirement, health care, training facility, staff back at the office, all the cars they drive and the lights and rent on the hiring hall itself.

    The Man knows the best way to keep workers working is to keep them close to paycheck to paycheck mentality. As soon as you start paying a guy a 'living wage' meaning they have a chance to get ahead, their interest in working hard seems to slide. They are planning time off to go on world cruises, maybe they don't want to ruin their manicure as well.

    There were two senators, Davis and Bacon back in the Depression times. They came up with the Davis Bacon Act which we know today as Prevailing Wage. Why? because 'boomers' from very poor areas of the country were booming into metro areas offering their skills for much less rates. It was softening working markets. So if someone came up from Louisiana to Michigan to work for half pay, the Act prevented that. So you'd have to pay the same for a boomer or a local, might as well hire the local and keep the money local was the reasoning. Prevailing Wage has been the huge tool that props up unions today. The Man knows this and has been trying to dismantle it forever.
     
  4. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

    56,806
    107,068
    Aug 28, 2011
    Henderson, NV & Orient
    0
    Teamsters is working hard all over America to organize XPO Logistics. They need their money to pay retired members their pension checks because the pension fund is in a mad race to the bottom and bankruptsy. Doubtful the Teamsters organizers are telling the XPO drivers about that.
     
    crazeydude Thanks this.
  5. scottied67

    scottied67 Road Train Member

    10,716
    12,248
    Mar 14, 2010
    california norte
    0
    Yes I have been following that a little bit. The Teamsters wanted to cut benefits and were denied. Just means their trust fund will be depleted years sooner and the retirees will be left with nothing unless a taxpayer bailout.

    Evidently the Pension Guarantee insurance itself is bankrupt.

    I know in my own union the trust fund has been sending out letters for years that we are in a 'red' status. I think you go red when your trust fund is around 75% funded against liablilites. We are under some mandated plan to get back into the 90 percentile. It is of major concern to me, I have 19 good years toward retirement of about $2200 a month as the quarterly statements indicate. Right now I am doing the math whether I want to take an early retirement check at 55 as opposed to 62 and trying to guesstimate how long I will live and figure which scenario pays me more as at 55 I lose a significant monthly amount but if I live past a certain age I beat waiting til 62. On the other hand it might all be a moot point if the trust fund goes bankrupt.
     
    MidWest_MacDaddy Thanks this.
  6. Pintlehook

    Pintlehook Road Train Member

    1,244
    1,922
    May 2, 2013
    0
    The pension fund is bankrupt because of the lack of employer contributions to it. Most, if not all, "new" organizational efforts are "white paper" deals that do NOT offer a defined retirement benefit. Furthermore, dues money is not used to fund the depleted pension.

    Not going to argue the fact that the Teamsters is a business, we both know that's true, but please don't misrepresent what happens with new organizing efforts or dues money.
     
    De Trucker and bottomdumpin Thank this.
  7. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

    56,806
    107,068
    Aug 28, 2011
    Henderson, NV & Orient
    0
    I know; the employer must contribute "X" amount of dollars each week to the union for each driver. I talked to a terminal manager about this very subject. He said the company pays out a lot of money that isn't earned by the driver and it comes from the company profits, and the drivers still whine and complain about the most minute details. "So & so got 10 more miles than I did last week and I'm senior to him, so I demand to be paid for those 10 miles also." All type of silly, childish complaints. Drivers stuffing garbage in each others fuel tanks because they were offended about some silly something. Anyway, I didn't want any part of that.
     
  8. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

    24,413
    122,162
    Jul 7, 2015
    Canuckistan
    0
    I had a union gig for about 16 months. The notion that being in a union protects you is a fallacy. I watched a few guys who had more senority than myself get escorted out the door (there was reasons for it that I won't get into on here. Basically 3 strikes and you're out). We had a solid crew for the most part. Everyone worked hard and got along great. There was little to none of the typical union BS from the other workers. That being said I will probably avoid taking another union job in the future. I'm a firm believer that a good, competent employee shouldn't have to hide behind a union. Plus I'd much rather have the $150 monthly dues in my pocket.
     
    Chinatown and Pintlehook Thank this.
  9. stayinback

    stayinback Road Train Member

    3,911
    8,245
    Jan 24, 2014
    chicago,il
    0
    that extra $150 in your pocket will go towards your "non-union" health benefits Plus you can probably add to that.

    You guys need to look at the BIGGER picture of a union job- Not just working conditions and Who's lazy and who's not..........The Vacations,Personal days-100% paid healthcare with zero deductables- And of Course-Premium pay- Don't you guys get aggravated working 60-70 hours a week for standard wages?> I SURE do.

    I said in another post- If I was young again- I wouldn't think Twice about joining 705....Prob 1 of the bigger mistakes I made.
     
    bottomdumpin Thanks this.
  10. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

    24,413
    122,162
    Jul 7, 2015
    Canuckistan
    0
    Its a little bit different scenario for me being north of the border.
     
    stayinback Thanks this.
  11. Pintlehook

    Pintlehook Road Train Member

    1,244
    1,922
    May 2, 2013
    0
    The company ,if stated in the contract, must contribute "X" amount of dollars to the pension fund. My agreement has no defined pension, we get profit sharing and a 401(k) plan with company match. A company does NOT give the union money per employee as you stated. Maybe I misunderstood you, but there's NO WAY a business will pay the union to employ drivers.

    And, as I have continuously stated in the past, I'm aware that certain folks don't want to be a part of organized labor and I'm good with that. You made your choice and, from what I read, you have done quite well for yourself. You should be darn proud of your accomplishments, I hope one day to have a home in Vegas and one overseas. However, I will defend anything I perceive as a falsehood, half truth, or misrepresentation of the Teamsters Union. Are the Teamsters perfect? HECK NO. But we need to stick to the facts.
     
    Dumdriver Thanks this.
  • Truckers Report Jobs

    Trucking Jobs in 30 seconds

    Every month 400 people find a job with the help of TruckersReport.

  • Thread Status:
    Not open for further replies.