As Union Demands a Fair Contract, GLCCD Statements Reveal it is Out of Touch with its Employees

| March 15, 2019

Yesterday, negotiations for the new Great Lakes Coca-Cola Distribution, Inc. collective bargaining agreements resumed between the Teamsters Local 727 bargaining committee and GLCCD, a subsidiary of Reyes Holdings.

The Parties began negotiations by discussing some of the topics discussed during the last bargaining session, including shift times and scheduling issues.  During the discussion, GLCCD management shockingly admitted to “playing games” with posting overtime notices.  Additionally, the Company outrageously equated live-loading to a rest break for employees and absurdly proposed the addition of a Sunday shift for employees in the sales warehouse.

In one of the most egregious insults from GLCCD, management indicated that it essentially does not want to make any changes to existing non-economic contract provisions because the contract provisions were “bought and paid for” via the measly wage increases of the last contract.  Local 727 Secretary-Treasurer John Coli, Jr. immediately corrected this outlandish statement and made it clear that such a stance would not lead to an agreement.

GLCCD also presented Local 727 with a proposal to introduce an “incentive pay system.”  Of course, a huge caveat to the Company’s proposal is that it would allow the Company to retain all rights to modify, amend, or entirely terminate the “incentive pay system” at any time.  Under such a system, employees would receive no guarantee as to how long the pay system would be in place and would receive no guarantee that the standards an employee would have to meet to obtain the incentive would be reasonable.

Despite the distaste for this initial proposal, the Local 727 bargaining committee evaluated the proposal and, as it has done throughout negotiations, countered with a reasonable alternative.  The Union’s counterproposal specified that general laborers and Local 727 representatives must be involved in the development of a reasonable “incentive pay system,” that the system must still be subject to the grievance process, and that GLCCD cannot have free reign to modify or terminate the program without the Union’s agreement.

“While Local 727 has taken time throughout negotiations to respond to each of GLCCD’s proposals with a fair counterproposal, GLCCD continues to disrespect the collective bargaining process by outright rejecting each of the Union’s proposals and offering no reasonable counterproposals,” stated Coli.  “Time is running out.  We are half-way through negotiations and only have a limited number of days left to negotiate before the current contract expires.  GLCCD must begin bargaining in earnest or we won’t reach a fair agreement in time.”

Nearly all of the Union’s contract proposals remain outstanding, including inclusion of GLCCD employees in the Teamsters Local 727 Health and Welfare Fund, fair scheduling procedures, and the elimination of the mix mode distribution system.  While the Union bargaining committee stressed workers’ need for serious change, GLCCD management’s statements and proposals revealed the Company is sorely out of touch with the realities facing its workforce.

All proposals will be revisited when the parties next meet on Tuesday, March 26th.

Members with questions should contact Local 727 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.

Category: BEVERAGE, Coca-Cola

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