Members of Union 117 briefly stop trucks driven by replacement workers at the Waste Management location on West Marginal Way in West Seattle. The recycling and yard waste drivers were on strike to get comparable wages. Garbage haulers were striking in sympathy, interrupting garbage service for 220,000 Seattle area residential customers. As of August 1, a tentative agreement has been reached.
UPDATE 3: Waste Management reports tentative agreement with Teamsters marking strike's end
UPDATE for Aug. 1
Waste Management reports they have come to a tentative agreement with Teamsters Local 117, representing the drivers who went on strike just over a week ago.
Waste Management drivers are expected to go back to work tomorrow morning (Aug. 2).
Here is the statement from Waste Management:
Following a confidential meeting between the parties’ lead negotiators, Waste Management and Teamsters Local 117 announced that they have reached a tentative agreement on a new 6-year contract.
Teamster leadership and the bargaining committee will fully recommend that members approve the new contract at the ratification vote scheduled for 9:00am on Thursday, August 2, 2012 at the Union Hall in Tukwila.
Note: Garbage drivers will return to work in the morning and begin servicing their regular Thursday collection routes. However, due to the timing of the ratification vote, recycling and yard waste collection will be limited. Please see www.wmnorthwest.com for more information.
“We are extremely pleased that we reached an agreement on a new contract that delivers a solid compensation package to our hardworking and professional drivers”, said Robin Freedman, spokesperson for Waste Management. “Although regular drivers will be back on their routes tomorrow it will take time to fully recover from this unfortunate situation. We appreciate the community’s patience during this time.”
“Teamster drivers work hard and deserve fair compensation for the important work that they perform,” announced Tracey Thompson, Secretary Treasurer for Teamster Local 117. “We are pleased to have negotiated a contract that recognizes the professionalism of our members.”
UPDATE July 31
The strike is affecting about 60 percent of the city, in Northwest and South Seattle. Teamsters Local 117’s contract with Waste Management expired May 31 and union drivers began striking last Wednesday, July 25. Teamsters 174 garbage and yard drivers have been honoring the Local 117 picket lines.
Collections by CleanScapes, which covers about 40 percent of the city are not impacted by the strike.
SPU continues to urge Waste Management and the Teamsters to engage in good faith negotiations toward a speedy and successful outcome.
Under its contract with the city, Waste Management is required to continue services in the event of any disruption. Specifically, any missed collections due to any labor complications must be collected later in the week, or the following week. Waste Management will not be paid for any non-service.
The contract allows the city to deduct approximately $15,000 to $20,000 per day in payments to Waste Management for any services that are not completed the next day. For any interruptions that continue more than a week, contractors can also be fined substantially for service failure, up to $1.25 million per day.
Protecting public health and safety continues to be the city’s top priority throughout this collection disruption.
SPU will provide updates as needed. Customers with solid waste service issues or concerns may call the Call Center at (206) 684-3000.
Customers with labor/union questions or concerns should contact Waste Management or Teamsters Local 117.
UPDATE July 30:
Seattle Public Utilities was placing robo calls to West Seattle residents on Monday advising that no garbage pickup was taking place on Tuesday as the strike by Teamsters Local 117 for recycling and yard waste, joined in sympathy by the garbage haulers of Teamsters Local 174 headed into its 7th day. Waste Management is aware that as much as $1.25 million per day might be levied if the service disruption continues.
The company stated on its update page: "We will collect up to twice your regular amount of missed services on your next regular service day at no additional charge."
Contract offers are being discussed as the Wednesday deadline for serious fines looms.
Original post July 29
If your pickup day for garbage in West Seattle is Monday, be prepared to keep it in the container until further notice. The strike affecting Waste Management is continuing this week as the company brings in non-union replacement workers, possibly forcing some conflict. Teamsters 174 garbage drivers are continuing to honor the picket lines.
The company said residential customers with Monday pickup will not get service. "We will collect up to twice your regular amount of missed services on your next regular service day at no additional charge," the company announced.
The strike by Teamsters Local 117 for recycling and yard waste drivers may move into a new phase by Wednesday since Seattle Public Utilities sent a warning to the company that contractually imposed fines of as much as $1.25 million per day might be levied if the service disruption continues.
Commercial customers did get service over the weekend according to the company and on the update page on the strike the company estabished were told, "If you are a Monday customer, please set out and/or unlock your containers as you normally would on a service day." The company said that "experienced WM substitute drivers have arrived and will focus on commercial collection on Monday."
See the service areas affected at the link above.
The company said they were standing by their most recent offer of a 6-year contract, totaling over $98,000 in overall compensation in the final year of the contract.
Readers are reporting that the company is placing automated calls to customers advising them there will be no pickup.
A contract offer has been submitted to the company according to media reports. KING 5 is reporting that the offer was submitted not by the union but instead by a federal mediator.
Check the Waste Management page for updates: