Union Files Grievance After Dr Pepper Violates the Terms of the Return to Work Agreement

| August 2, 2018

Teamsters Local 727 is pursuing a grievance against the American Bottling Company, a subsidiary of Dr Pepper, in response to the Company’s violation of the terms of the Return to Work Agreement that brought more than 150 drivers back to work following the Union’s victory in the recent Unfair Labor Practice strike against Dr Pepper.

As stipulated in the agreement, the Company agreed to clean and inspect all vehicles PRIOR to Local 727 members returning to work. When the drivers reported for work on July 2, 2018, they discovered that this clearly had not occurred as they were filthy and in disrepair. The Union immediately filed a grievance on behalf of all Dr Pepper drivers.

When asked to produce documentation showing that the Company had fulfilled its obligations to clean and inspect the vehicles, management could not do so. In fact, Dr Pepper management confirmed at the grievance meeting on this issue that they had not swept, wiped, or washed anything within or outside the trucks. According to a senior member of management who was purportedly tasked with cleaning the vehicles, he only collected trash. However, he admitted he may not have removed all of the garbage and “may have missed some” trucks all together.

In addition to acknowledging they had not cleaned or inspected all of the vehicles, the Company made it clear that it has no intention of fulfilling its obligations. Rather, Dr Pepper attempted to shift the blame for the filthy vehicles onto Union members.

“Dr Pepper’s behavior is reprehensible,” said John Coli, Jr., Secretary-Treasurer of Local 727. “it’s absurd management would think they could get away with ignoring the terms of a signed agreement by illogically claiming drivers are somehow at fault.”

“The Union will not tolerate companies reneging on signed agreements,” added Coli. “The Return to Work Agreement was very clear on Dr Pepper’s obligations. We will pursue this grievance until the Company has met each and every one of those obligations.”

Members with questions should contact Business Representative Caleen Carter-Patton at (847) 696-7500 or [email protected]

Nothing in this article should be read as the union’s waiver of any legal argument, position or additional grievance. The union does not forfeit its right to make any and all supplemental arguments.

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Category: BEVERAGE

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