Teamsters: Cook DuPage Transportation’s Last Minute Refusal To Meet Industry Standards Offends Chicago Paratransit Workers
CHICAGO, Nov. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Cook DuPage Transportation Co., Inc. (CDT), a subsidiary of National Express (LSE: NEX), not only continues to drag its feet during negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement with Teamsters Local 727, but has offended more than 750 Teamster paratransit workers with its last-minute meager economic package proposal.
The union presented CDT with a comprehensive contract proposal over two months ago, during the parties’ first bargaining session on Sept. 7. Throughout negotiations, Local 727 has emphasized that CDT employees are seeking only what is fair and right—respect from their employer and economic parity with local industry standards.
In the months preceding and throughout negotiations, the Chicago paratransit industry has experienced both a surge in service requests and a worker shortage. However, unlike MV Transportation, Inc. and First Transit, Inc., CDT’s insulting economic proposal yesterday fails to address this issue.
After more than two months of delays and excuses, and with only days remaining before the contract extension expires, CDT management presented Local 727 with a new economic proposal which outraged the union bargaining committee. Under CDT’s most recent economic offer, the most senior employees’ wages come nowhere near the other paratransit operators who do the exact same work. In fact, in some instances, this proposal would result in CDT employees making up to $2 less an hour than other paratransit industry employees. In another shocking move, CDT’s economic offer went backwards from its Oct. 30 wage offer for almost all employees with more than four years of seniority.
“CDT should be embarrassed by its economic proposal which completely disregards our hardworking members who break their backs to meet the company’s heightened demands and provide a necessary service to some of Chicago’s most vulnerable residents,” argued John Coli, Jr., Secretary-Treasurer of Local 727.
“Seniority and company loyalty should be rewarded, not ignored,” added Coli. “CDT’s competitors, MV Transportation and First Transit, have raised wages and taken steps to compensate their employees’ hard work. There is no reason CDT shouldn’t do the same. These employees do the same work and are worth more than the company’s current offer. Local 727 demands CDT return to the table with a fair offer that takes into account the dedication and loyalty of our members.”
The parties’ contract extension agreement expires on Nov. 15.
The parties have a final bargaining session schedule for Nov. 13.
Teamsters Local 727 represents nearly 10,000 hardworking men and women throughout the Chicago area.
Donnie Von Moore
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SOURCE Teamsters Local 727