PHOTOS: At December Meeting, Local 727 Executive Board Sworn in for New Term, State of the Union Address Delivered by Secretary-Treasurer Coli

| December 20, 2019

Standing before a packed hall, Secretary-Treasurer John Coli, Jr. and several of the recently re-elected members of the Local 727 Executive Board were once again sworn into office during the Teamsters Local 727 general membership meeting on Sunday, December 15. The Executive Board’s new term will begin on January 1, 2020 and will continue through December 31, 2022.

Following the swearing-in, Secretary-Treasurer Coli delivered his annual State of the Union address. In his address, Secretary-Treasurer Coli highlighted the Union’s major victories over the past year.

                     Secretary-Treasurer Coli delivers                       the 2019 State of the Union address.

Among the top accomplishments of the Union in 2019 were the negotiation of more than 70 collective bargaining agreements—92% of which ratified with over 82% support—and the successful organizing of nearly 300 new Teamster Brothers and Sisters.

Over the past year, Local 727 has filed for, and overwhelmingly won, 4 separate representation elections. In terms of Illinois Teamsters, the Union’s elections account for 20% of the representation elections filed for by Joint Council 25 affiliates in Region 13 this year.

“Out of 25 affiliates, our Union filed for nearly a quarter of the elections in our Joint Council,” reported Coli on Sunday, “and we were, by far, the most successful this year.”

In his State of the Union address, Secretary-Treasurer Coli attributed the Union’s organizing success over the past year to Local 727’s proven ability to raise industry standards, as well as the Local’s unwavering dedication to defending and protecting the rights of members.

“Local 727 isn’t afraid to take on any employer, no matter how large they may be, to ensure our members receive what’s fair and just… we’ll fight tooth and nail for our Brothers and Sisters,” said Coli.

To date, in 2019 alone, Local 727 has resolved 427 grievances, filed for 35 arbitrations, and continues to fight in hundreds of ongoing grievances. Of those resolved this year, 47% of Local 727’s grievances were filed against misbehaving soda companies, including 42 against Keurig Dr Pepper, 74 grievances against GLCCD, and 101 against Pepsi—the biggest offender this year.

Secretary-Treasurer Coli also made it clear on Sunday that Local 727 is not afraid to file unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board when an employer violates federal labor laws. In addition to mentioning the Union’s NLRB victories against Keurig Dr Pepper, CC Traffic, and Chicago Jewish Funerals this year, he also announced during his State of the Union address that the NLRB’s Office of Appeals informed the Union late on Friday, December 13 that it had decided to overturn Region 13’s decision to dismiss the ULP charge filed by Local 727 against CVS for overall bad faith bargaining.

Click above to read Secretary-Treasurer Coli’s 2019 State of the Union address in full.

“The Office of Appeals determined that CVS has—as we have claimed for more than 3 years— been acting in bad faith throughout negotiations and has engaged in overall bad faith bargaining. As a result of this decision, CVS will be forced to reform its behavior or face complaint and a hearing,” announced Coli. “This is a huge victory for our Union.”

In addition to highlighting the Union’s many accomplishments throughout 2019, Secretary-Treasurer Coli also took time to update the Local 727 membership on the health of the Local 727 Funds.

As of October 31, the Teamsters Local Union No. 727 Pension Fund is strong and stable with over $440.5 million in assets and a funding ratio of 115.5%. Also thriving, the Local 727 Legal and Educational Assistance Fund was able to distribute more than $2.6 million in tuition and educational fee reimbursements this year alone to help make college more affordable for Local 727 members and their families.

Similarly, this year the Local 727 Health and Welfare Fund Trustees were able to help members and their families by improving vision coverage for all plan participants. The Trustees will also soon be restoring the right of trade show industry members to buy up to 50 hours each year to qualify for the Union’s health care benefits. In total, the Health and Welfare Fund paid nearly $31 million in medical claims, over $5.4 million in prescription claims, and more than $2.9 million in dental claims in 2019.

Looking towards the future, Secretary-Treasurer Coli assured members that the Local 727 Executive Board and Local 727 Funds Trustees would continue to work tirelessly to improve the financial wellbeing of the Union.

“Over the past year, the Executive Board and I have increased the Union’s net assets by more than 10%. Next year, we hope to go farther and to reach a new high so that we have the financial strength to take on any fight,” said Coli. “But we can’t grow our union power alone. We need our entire Teamster Family to stand up and take action.”

Secretary-Treasurer Coli ended his annual address by calling on all Local 727 members to continue to stand up and fight for their Union Brothers and Sisters in 2020.

To read Secretary-Treasurer Coli’s 2019 State of the Union address in full, click here.

Before concluding the meeting, Secretary-Treasurer Coli handed out perfect attendance certificates to the 35 dedicated members who attended every Local 727 general membership meeting in 2019.

The next general membership meeting will be held at noon on Sunday, January 26, 2020, in the 727 meeting hall at 1300 W. Higgins Road, Suite 114 in Park Ridge, IL.

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: PHOTOS, Union News

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