As the Strib management tries to spin the pension cuts and give-backs it is demanding from drivers, reports David Brauer in MinnPost, Strib writers are backing the drivers and debunking the management statements. Brauer reprints the entire writers’ memorandum. A few notable paragraphs:
In fact, the company is demanding deeper, more permanent sacrifices from the Teamsters, when it comes to pensions, than it is seeking from any other labor group. The company memorandum is filled with distortion and inaccuracies in an effort to build up animosity toward our brother and sister trade unionists.
The truth is that the company has pushed the Teamsters’ back to the wall. Although the pension dispute is unresolved at this writing, the drivers’ union has already tentatively agreed to huge concessions, that includes, at minimum, a 26 percent reduction in wages. (That’s a bigger pay cut, for example, than many in the newsroom have taken, and newsroom workers have taken some big hits.)
Over the years, the drivers have deferred large wage increases so more of their base pay can go to their pension. Besides the drivers’ hourly pay, $5 per hour per driver is put into their pension (a combination of deferred pay from the driver and a contribution from the company.) Under the company plan, drivers will lose that $5 along with the 26 per cent wage cut, bringing the drivers’ total pay cut to a staggering 37 percent.
The memo goes on to take apart management claims, paragraph by paragraph.
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