Sisters and Brothers,
For the entire time you will be a Teamsters 853 member, you will hear from the leadership to get involved with your union. We throw out slogans like “We are stronger together”, and “Strength in numbers”.
But what does it really mean to get involved with the Teamsters 853 union? What can one member do to help. And how does that effort translate into helping our members or working women and men in general?
Three new members make a huge impact.
This is the story of Three Premier Recycler members in San Jose who stood up to testify to the San Jose City Council on wage theft. Their testimony contributed to convincing several council members to aggressively and publically stand up to Premier Recycle and advocate specifically for the workers and their contract.
Roughly a year ago, Premier Recycle workers in San Jose voted to unionize their workplace as Teamster 853 members. For the past year, Premier Recycle has employed standard union-busting tactics to stall a Union contract from moving forward. The longer they stall, the better it is for them.
So recently, Teamster 853 members Alex Obeso, Ramon Castillo, and Mike Flores from Premier Recycle, along with Business Agent Jesse Casqueiro and Vice President Ray Torres, took the opportunity to make statements to the San Jose City Council on wage theft in their industry.
Around the same time, a letter was written on behalf of three of the San Jose city council members to the company that owns Premier Recycle. This excerpt sums up the tone of the letter.
“We are well acquainted with the strategies you are all implementing to intimidate your workers from organizing and ensuring a quality workplace. We have heard concerns of safety & wage theft claims, falsification of votes, unwarranted surveillance and a general environment of hostility, division and divisiveness among other unfair labor practices.San Jose Councilmember, Peter Ortiz
Let it be known that we take jeopardizing the wellbeing of working families as a personal issue. The resilience and strength of San José is built upon the labor of the working-class. This is an understanding that many of our Council colleagues share. ”
Read the whole letter from three San Jose council members to the owners of Premier Recycle.
This is the power of participation of just three members of Teamsters Local 853, who stepped up and decided to get involved. Their actions resulted in securing strong allies in government who will advocate for workers everywhere.
So when you say, “I’m just one member of Teamsters Local 853, what can I do?” We say a lot!!! Now you know just one way members can change things for the better.
There are also simple ways to get involved in your union.
- Attend Monthly Meetings
- Sign up to our email list to stay up to date on all of the events at the local.
Teamsters are stronger together. Get involved in your Union, and make a difference!
Teamsters Local 853