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Milwaukee Teamsters Call On Waste Management to Stop Threatening Workers
8/26/2008

Solid Waste Giant Holds City Hostage with Unconscionable Actions

MILWAUKEE, Aug. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, Teamsters at Waste Management Inc. (WMI) represented by Local 200 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, called on the solid waste giant to stop its representatives from threatening and coercing union workers. The union would rather the company spend its energy on returning to the bargaining table with a realistic offer that protects the future of the hard-working men and women that provide a vital public service to the metropolitan area.


The two sides have been in negotiations for more than eight months and have been able to settle 90 percent of the bargaining issues. However, the union was forced to file an unfair labor practice charge against WMI on Friday, August 22 after discovering that company management had been going around their elected representatives and coercing and threatening workers.


"The company has no shame," said Tom Millonzi, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 200. "We have 212 men and women working at Waste Management that have shown nothing but loyalty to this company. We have never broken labor peace and always negotiated in good faith for more than 30 years but now the company is threatening them and coercing them? It is unconscionable."


The workers have been without a contract nearly four months after agreeing to continue to negotiate past the agreement's expiration on April 30. The Teamsters initially approached WMI to negotiate in early January, but the company refused to meet until February. WMI continues to stall and delay during each step of process.


The union has been left with little recourse and pending the results of a meeting scheduled for Tuesday, August 26 with WMI, will consider all options to ensure that their members' rights are protected.


"The last thing our union wants to do is strike during the middle of one of the city's most celebrated events," Millonzi said. "Thousands of Harley Davidson riders have already begun arriving in Milwaukee and the impact they will have on the city is immeasurable. To adequately police the waste generated from these visitors, our members need to be doing their jobs and be on their trucks, but we won't allow the company to strong arm our members. The ball is in Waste Management's court."


Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States and Canada.


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Source: Teamsters Local 200


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