A Growing Union is a Strong Union

Secretary-Treasurer Peter Finn with Washington Hospital Stewards (L-R) Maria Armstrong, Micki Estrada, and Stacey Alexandre.

Secretary-Treasurer Peter Finn with Washington Hospital Stewards (L-R) Maria Armstrong, Micki Estrada, and Stacey Alexandre.

With seven organizing wins over the last year, more than 1,000 workers have become new Local 856 members since early 2014. Through a commitment to organizing and a steady focus on fighting to get results at the bargaining table, our Local Union has been able to grow, both in numbers and in strength. While our primary focus is always on negotiating strong contracts and providing aggressive representation, we have not forgotten that we build power as an organization, as a movement, and as a membership, through organizing. Organizing adds density in key industries, expands our geographic and political influence, and most important, adds resources to support current members’ bargaining fights, contract enforcement, and representation. Growth through organizing directly translates into a growth of strength for all members of Local 856.

Since Mount Diablo Unified School District and City of Santa Rosa employees became 856 members last spring, five more units voted to become Teamsters and our Local now has new members working for the City of Walnut Creek, Northern California Pipe Trades Trust Fund, City of South San Francisco, US Airways/American Airlines, and the Town of Windsor. These new 856 members work in both the private and public sector, in a range of professions including office professionals, maintenance workers, 911 dispatchers, customer service representatives, and more.

Member Organizers Key to Campaign Victories
A key component of each of these organizing victories has involved current 856 members speaking to workers about what it means to be a Teamster, detailing their personal experience of being represented by Local 856, and sharing their individual union stories. While strength, resources, and professional representation are certainly determining factors when workers choose to become members of Teamsters 856, it is the direct one-on-one conversations with current members that produce the type of unique personal impact that drives home that they are joining a real, living organization made up of members with the same interests and goals.

We want to recognize the important work accomplished by 856 member organizers in 2014 and encourage those of you interested to get involved in a campaign during the year ahead. You can make a real difference in helping workers achieve their goal of the security and respect of a Teamster contract.

1,000 New Members Organized

In 2014, our Local grew by 1,000 new members through organizing — let’s build on this success together in 2015. If you’d like to get involved with an organizing drive, please let your union representative know, or click here.