Important May Day Message From Teamsters Local 727 Secretary-Treasurer John Coli Jr.

| May 1, 2020

On May 4, 1886, thousands of Chicago workers and Union members took to the streets in solidarity to demand a fair and safe work day. Even when the police became violent, the workers did not waiver—determined to achieve workers’ rights for all. On May Day we celebrate those workers and their eventual victories at the Haymarket Affair. Because of those selfless workers, we have the 8 hour work day.

This May Day which is also known as International Workers’ Day is unique. On this May Day, the entire world is faces a global pandemic and many nations, including the United States, are confronting economic disaster. Unemployment has skyrocketed and workers’ safety is now more important than ever. Across the country, non-union frontline, essential workers are standing together by implementing walk-outs and one day strikes when their employer treated them as expendable rather than essential. From Amazon, to Instacart and Uber, these non-union workers tell stories of increased hours with no face masks, hand sanitizers, or social distancing protections. They report getting sick and being unjustly terminated for staying home in order to recover and protect their coworkers and families.

For our members at Teamsters Local 727, thousands of members have also made the brave decision to collectively stand up to their employers. We have collective bargaining agreements and grievance processes to hold management accountable. But, most importantly, we have a voice. Teamsters Local 727 has used its voice to demand increased protections and hazard pay for our frontline, essential members that are still working. For those who have been unjustly furloughed, we have filed grievances, contacted city and state officials, and filed labor board charges demanding that Employers prioritize people over profits.

“Every day, I’m amazed and impressed by our membership. Thousands of our hardworking brothers and sisters are still showing up every day to help keep our communities safe and at home. These members continue to keep our City and State moving during this time. They selflessly put themselves and their families at risk—to care for the animals at the zoo, to get water into the stores, to make sure the sick and elderly get their prescriptions, to protect the sick at McCormick Place, to transport our most vulnerable communities, and care for the deceased. Because of this Teamsters Local 727 members are the heroes this May Day,” said John Coli Jr, Teamsters Local 727 Secretary-Treasurer.

“Now is the time for our non-union brothers and sisters to join the movement. Front-line workers are essential, not expendable. It is not enough to say thank you. We, as a nation, must hold employers accountable. Teamsters Local 727 will always fight for workers’ rights. Happy May Day to all workers continuing to fight for more!”



Nothing in this article should be read as the union’s waiver of any legal argument, position or grievance(s), or as a waiver of any rights, arguments, or defenses under any contract, collective bargaining agreement, or applicable law. The union does not forfeit its right to make any and all supplemental arguments.

Category: Union News

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