UE Locals 155, 716, 1177, and 1077 entered negotiations for a new national agreement this summer with a strong program of change for rail crew drivers across the country.
The UE Bargaining Committee of eight drivers from around the country has been fighting for better jobs for the 1,000 drivers covered by the national contract. The Bargaining Committee consists of Johnny Bardge, Local 155 (New Jersey), Sam Foti, Local 716 (Ohio), Larry Hopkins and Clarence Hill, Local 1177 (Indiana and Illinois) and Laura Johnson, Ron Russell, Malissa Gollaher and Bobby Rivera, Local 1077 (California and Nevada). These drivers are leaders in their locals and have been fighting to hold Hallcon accountable – now they get to sit as equals across from the Company to negotiate better conditions.
The union began meeting with the company on July 18 in Sacramento, CA and has met for 8 sessions. The talks so far have been tough because UE members don’t see eye to eye with Hallcon on many matters, but the UE negotiating committee has made some progress. Pay is the number one issue for drivers and the negotiating committee has put together a strong economic proposal which includes a wage and benefit package that brings all drivers to at least $15 per hour after three years, and those that are close to $15, much higher.
The contract expired on August 23, 2018 and drivers are getting ready for a fight to get what they deserve.