Management for Reyes/Great Lakes Coca-Cola withdrew many of its non-economic proposals as bargaining for a new contract continued with Teamsters Local 727 on Friday, November 6.
Throughout the extremely productive all-day session, Reyes and the Local 727 Bargaining Committee worked through a comprehensive list of all outstanding non-economic proposals on the table. The company tentatively agreed to several proposals while eliminating many of its own, including:
• Withdrawing a proposal to switch to bi-weekly pay periods, agreeing to keep weekly payrolls
• Maintaining current contract language regarding medical leave time
• Withdrawing proposed language that employees should work two days before and after all holidays
• Agreeing to union security language and just cause progressive discipline
• Withdrawing a proposal to reopen the contract whenever new legislation affects the beverage industry
• Correcting the posting of overtime opportunities
During negotiations, the Bargaining Committee voiced its frustration with Reyes for disingenuously posting overtime at its Chicago and Alsip locations, only to suddenly change or cancel the posted schedules. As a result of Friday’s bargaining, Reyes management agreed to immediately change its failed overtime posting procedures. Volunteer sign-up sheets will now be used for all workers to sign up for overtime for the following week. Even before current negotiations conclude, changes immediately will be made in Chicago, with the Alsip facility to follow suit.
“I’m very excited that Reyes has agreed to make these changes. This will correct the abusive overtime of the past,” said Local 727 member Ricky Griffin.
“I’m also excited about guaranteeing our weekly paychecks. It’s a good schedule the members want to keep,” said member Bernard Choice. His sentiments were echoed by member LaShawn Smith, who sits on the Bargaining Committee as well.
“We’re definitely making headway with Reyes. No question about it,” added member Nick Flossi.
Local 727 member Michelle Grych said, “These are the most successful contract negotiations I have ever been a part of.”
On Friday, the union made it clear that all members of the Committee were willing to stay as long as it took to work through proposals. Now, only a handful of non-economic proposals remain. After Friday’s progressive talks, the Committee has no reason to believe that upcoming negotiations regarding economics for wages and benefits will be any less productive. Bargaining will resume on November 16.
Reyes has stressed its preference to introduce live loading to the new contract. Local 727 requested more information and would like to address any effects it could have on workers. The topic will be talked about.
Anyone with questions should contact Aisha Hurston at (847) 696-7500 or [email protected].