UPS Drivers and Teamsters’ Union Up In Arms Over Holiday Schedule

When it comes to gearing up for the Holidays, no one does it with more gusto than the United States of America.

Our nation’s diverse heritage, combined with our inalienable right to the freedom of religion, has given the U.S. a unique outlook on end of the year festivities that occur within her borders.  Christmas is, of course, the big one, dominating the American landscape with its traditions of giving gifts and spending time with the family.  One industry in particular helps to achieve both of those goals throughout the span between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, but a major player may be bucking back against the system.

UPS, the enormous shipping company responsible for an incredible percentage of the nation’s transport of Christmas gifts, has always understood that their business undergoes a massive uptick during the holiday season – especially with the advent of online shopping over the course of the last few years.  Now, however, one city’s UPS drivers are looking to make their voices heard as the big brown package handling organization has seemingly dropped the ball when it comes to preparedness.

“UPS drivers are planning to demonstrate against a 70-hour work week during the holiday season.

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“The Teamsters Locals said UPS ‘is forcing a 70-hour week for drivers’ which is ‘a nationwide issue jeopardizing the safety of drivers and the general public.’

“UPS failed to plan ahead and hire seasonal drivers for the holidays, said the Teamsters, and instead increased the hours of regular workers to compensate.

“’Teamster who usually show up for work 45 minutes early will instead demonstrate against the unfair move by management this holiday season.’

“’Our employees’ scheduled work week is in compliance with Department of Transportation requirements,’ the company said. ‘Union-represented employees are paid time and one-half for work above 40 hours per week and they receive the industry’s most attractive compensation and benefits program.’”

According to UPS, service won’t suffer during this demonstration, but common sense indicates that any sort of protest would need to be affecting efficiency to have any real effect.

Furthermore, should this sentiment continue to permeate UPS with other cities’ drivers coming on board for the demonstration, there is a great risk that the grand holiday machinations of the shipping industry could grind to a halt just before Santa is supposed to give up the goods.

Maybe this is a year where we shouldn’t ask what Brown can do for us, but rather, what we can do for Brown – a paraphrase the UPS tagline.

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