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Thirty-Three City And Line Hall Drivers & Dockmen Employed At Land-Air Express Of New England’s Tonawanda Terminal Vote To “Go Union” - Will Now Be Represented By Kenmore-Headquartered Teamsters Local 375

Published Tuesday, March 29, 2011 11:00 am
by Tom Campbell/Editor-Publisher

(TONAWANDA) – Thirty-three City Drivers, Line Haul Drivers and Dockmen who are employed at Land-Air Express Of New England’s Tonawanda Terminal have voted for Union Representation with Teamsters Local 375, representatives of the Kenmore-headquartered Union tell WNYLaborToday.com this afternoon.

A majority of the Land-Air Express Workers recently voted for Union Representation after approaching Teamsters Local 375 back in December, the Union’s Secretary-Treasurer/Business Agent Kevin Drysdale said.  In all, 13 City Drivers, 11 Line-Haul Drivers and nine Dockmen are now members of Teamsters Local 375, which will begin reaching out to management in the not too distant future in order to start negotiations on a first contract, Drysdale said.

The Land-Air Express Workers were the ones that had contacted Teamsters Local 375 to learn about the benefits of being Union Represented, Drysdale tells WNYLaborToday.com. 

“There’d been changes in (the workers) Health Care Coverage and the company had a history of failing to maintain workplace and safety regulations.  In fact, we have a half-dozen Labor Charges filed against them with the National Labor Relations Board. (The employees) really needed a Union to help them,” Drysdale said.

Despite the charges, Drysdale added the future relationship between Teamsters Local 375 and Land-Air Express Management in Tonawanda “can be a very positive one.”

“That’s what we’re looking to accomplish,” Drysdale said. “What the Teamsters can bring to the table is very important, because we can help this company grow its business.  We’re not in the business of putting companies out of business.”

In addition, Teamsters Local 375 Representatives also need time to begin to educate the Union’s newest members at Land-Air Express to what it means to be Union-Represented and what they can expect from their Union, Drysdale said. 

“It was a huge leap of faith for them to join a Union.  They’ve never been in a Union and they need to be educated.  And it goes to show you that there are workers out there who need Union Representation and we’re here to offer them the same help and assistance,” Drysdale said.

Drysdale, meanwhile, also praised Teamsters Local 375 Recording Secretary/Organizer John Rousseau and Local 375’s Executive Board for the role they all played in assisting the Union in organizing the 33 Land-Air Express Workers.

Teamsters Local 375 represents more than 1,500 members in the Buffalo area, including 1,100 active members who work for a number of employers, including BOC-Linde Gases, ABF Freight Systems, Cope Bestway, Rural Metro, Avis and Hertz, and New Penn Motor - a division of Yellow Roadway Corporation Worldwide, as well as in positions at several area warehousing locations – including Battenfeld-American, Inc. in South Buffalo and Uni-Select Incorporated’s City of Tonawanda plant.

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million members across the United States, and in Canada and Puerto Rico.

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