LA-Long Beach truckers strike to protest eco compliance cost

Time: 2017-06-19 13:40
AN unofficial LA-Long Beach workers' group, Justice for Port Truck Drivers (JPTD), said it will strike from Monday June 19 to protest having to pay "clean truck" compliance costs.
"The strike will include drivers from several trucking companies, including XPO Logistics, as well as warehouse workers working on port property," said the release from JPTD, a group attached to the Teamsters union.
Drivers have been successfully fighting in court to be granted employee status rather than being treated as independent contracts force to pay for their vehicle's upkeep, and are now against environmental mandates they say assigns costs to them.
The action was prompted by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia's announcement of a second "Clean Truck Programme" which appears to assign compliance costs to independent truckers.
"The last time they did this, the corporations ended up passing on the cost requiring workers to lease a truck leaving little to take home. We don't want that to happen again," said Teamsters local secretary-treasurer Eric Tate.
This mayors' announcement covered a pact setting sweeping environmental goals for the ports, including zero emission trucks by 2035.
Since the 2008 Clean Truck Programme went into effect, the California Labour Commissioner has ordered more than US$40 million in back pay to port drivers because trucking companies have induced drivers to accept truck lease schemes.
Recently a federal court judge upheld an award of almost $1 million to five drivers employed by XPO Logistics, said the release.
In fact, federal and state government agencies and courts have issued over 300 decisions determining port drivers are in fact employees.
"Nevertheless, the ports have thus far refused to ban, suspend, or penalise trucking companies that are breaking US labour laws," said the JPTD release.
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