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Teamsters Celebrate Women’s History Month

 

March is Women’s History Month and March 8 marks International Women’s Day. The Teamsters Union honors women’s accomplishments during this month, while championing progress and celebrating women’s achievements year-round.

Teamster women are strong and committed to improving the lives and working conditions of all workers. Throughout the Teamsters’ 115-year history, women have played a critical role in the fight for justice. Whether marching in the streets for workers’ rights or taking their message to statehouses, Teamster sisters have always fought and continue to press forward for social and economic justice.

Over the past century, the Teamsters Union has voiced the slogan of “equal pay for all.” Teamsters stand for equal pay, and the union’s contracts are gender and color-blind. However, more work needs to be done in the world at large.

The July 1917 issue of the Teamster Magazine stated, “Equal pay for equal work should become a constant, vigorous slogan among all employees in all crafts. The strength and brains of women and girls are exploited the world over and especially so in the United States.”

After Women’s History Month has concluded, April 10 will mark Equal Pay Day. This day signifies how far into the year women must work in the United States to earn what men earned in the previous year.

Organizing would help overcome that gap. Women in unions earn over $200 more per week than nonunion women. They also are more likely to have paid health care, retirement, vacation and a safer workplace. It holds true that workers of all genders benefit from union membership.

Not pleased with this, corporate-funded anti-union front groups and multimillionaires have waged war on working people. The Supreme Court is currently hearing the Janus vs. AFSCME case. A decision in favor of Janus would hurt public employees, many of whom are women. The Economic Policy Institute found that African American women would suffer most from an anti-union decision in Janus, since they make up 18 percent of public employees.

Anyone who has followed the news in the past year has witnessed a growing movement of women who are making their voices heard, calling for respect and equality, and organizing around the elimination of unfair treatment.

Teamsters know best that engagement is how change takes place. Teamsters are busy standing up in their roles as shop stewards, mentoring coworkers, rallying around workforce issues and human rights issues, joining committees, getting involved in their communities and running for political office.

At the annual Teamsters Women’s Conference in San Antonio in September, more than a thousand Teamsters gathered with the spirit of taking action. The conference slogan was “Teamster Women Spur Change,” because that’s what Teamster women do.

As we look to the past this month, we remain focused on the future, and the role that Teamster sisters, along with their Teamster brothers, play to ensure a brighter future for all workers.

 

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News Archive

Testimonial

For 35 years I have been a Teamster and a Dairyworker, I was a young kid needing a job in tough economic times. I found a place to work and make a living, I learned to work together with others having varying and different backgrounds than my own.

Much has changed for me personally and professionally, I got married to my beautiful wife of almost 25 years and we have raised two amazing children, both of whom are presently studying abroad. Both of my children were recipients of Hoffa Memorial Scholarship Funding.

So much of my success I can credit to having a well paying union job. The Teamsters have been a great union for me, negotiating strong collective agreements that held good wage and benefit packages as well as the cornerstone beliefs of seniority and workers’ rights. The Teamsters gave me a good wage and a voice.

I have always been an active Teamster, and now I sit on Local 464's Executive Board.

There can be a great degree of personal feelings when the word union is mentioned, but so often I look at professional associations and realize the name may be different, but the thought is the same...strength in numbers.

As I get toward the end of my career, I look forward to the thought of receiving the Teamsters Canada Pension Plan, and I am so grateful for the belief others had before me that Teamsters deserved a good and decent retirement...thank you.

Drew


- Drew Speirs

“They have demonstrated the dedication and leadership that
our Local requires. They have always provided sound counsel, support, and frank
discussion on matters involving the members, contract negotiations and our
Local.“ 

- Bruce Tillapaugh –Shop Steward. Island Farms, Victoria

"I have been a member of Teamsters Local 464 for 23 years and have seen many of the executives come and go. Some of the previous executives nearly ran the Local into bankruptcy including losing our pension.  Bobby Kornhass, Bob Ryder and Paul Barton brought us back from the brink. Since they took over in 2000, we at Dairyland (Saputo) have had the best contracts I have seen since I have been there."

- Randy Onyschak