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July 26, 2012
Teamsters Local 117 went on strike that day and Local 174 fully honored the strike the following day, suspending service, said Robin Freedman, communications, with Waste Management in Kirkland, Wash., in an interview. She said 153 recycling workers and 350 waste drivers are on strike, affecting the company’s service in King and Senohomish counties.
According to a Teamsters news release, the National Labor Relations Board is investigating a number of violations committed by Waste Management, including bad-faith bargaining, coercing and direct dealing with its employees, threatening to retaliate against workers and unilaterally changing working conditions.
“Waste Management has forced this labor dispute through its blatant disregard of U.S. law,” said Local 117 Secretary-Treasurer Tracey Thompson.
Freedman said the company made their best contract offer in early June, and the union didn’t vote on the proposal. It would increase the average worker’s salary from $58,000 to $68,000 by the end of the six-year contract, with a total compensation value of $98,000.
She said as far as service in the Seattle area the company is monitoring the situation day by day.
News Editor, Waste360
Allan Gerlat joined the Waste360 staff in September 2011 as news editor. He was the editor of Waste & Recycling News for the first 16 years of its history, and under his guidance the publication won 27 national and regional awards.
Before Waste & Recycling News, Allan worked at another Crain Communications publication, Rubber & Plastics News, which covers rubber product manufacturing. He began with the publication as associate editor and eventually became managing editor, a position he held for nine years.
Allan is a graduate of Ohio University, where he earned a BS in journalism. He is based in Sagamore Hills, in northeast Ohio.
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