Twenty-two Waste Management Inc., drivers and Teamsters Local 137 members in Redding, Calif., have voted unanimously to ratify their first contract. The four-year contract will allow the workers to enter the Western Conference of Teamsters Pension Plan and obtain affordable Teamsters healthcare. In addition to those benefits, the contract includes wage increases over the duration of the contract and job protection.
"Individually, we as drivers had no voice with management to create positive change in our working conditions," said driver Vincent Smith, a 27-year-old employee at Waste Management, in a press release. "With the help of the Teamsters, we've won representation, ratified our first contract and will be seeing major steps forward in our working conditions."
This decision was made after a year of negotiating.