Transport Workers Struggles

Washington, DC area transit workers call for expansion of fight as strike enters fourth week

By Nick Barrickman, 20 November 2019

Bus drivers opposing privatizations and poverty pay must defy the Amalgamated Transit Union’s effort to divide and weaken their struggle.

Australia: All Sydney bus services to be privatised within two years

By Martin Scott, 9 November 2019

Thousands of drivers and other workers face an uncertain future as the state government continues the sell-off of public transport.

“Teachers, autoworkers, everybody in this country, should go on strike”

New York City bus and subway workers speak out against concession demands

By a WSWS reporting team, 6 November 2019

The Metropolitan Transit Authority wants to introduce part-timers, outsource work to cheap-labor contractors and reduce overtime pay as it funnels more money to the Wall Street banks and wealthy bondholders.

India: Growing support for 48,000 Telangana workers fired for striking

By Arun Kumar and Kranti Kumara, 2 November 2019

The Telangana transport workers courageously defied the state Chief Minister’s ultimatum that they immediately end their strike or be deemed “self-dismissed.”

New York City transit workers and the fight for social equality

By Allen Whyte and Daniel de Vries, 30 October 2019

Working without a contract since May, transit workers are facing unprecedented attacks on working conditions being demanded by Wall Street.

New York City transit authority adds 500 police officers

By Philip Guelpa, 11 October 2019

Amidst crumbling infrastructure, deteriorating service, and repeated fare increases, the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is hiring 500 new police officers to patrol the New York City transit system.

Sri Lankan railway unions end strike, after “promises” from President Sirisena

By Pradeep Ramanayake and K. Ratnayake, 9 October 2019

Sirisena’s assurances are worthless but always seized on by the union bureaucracy to shut down industrial action and impose a sell-out.

New York City transit workers exposed to toxic asbestos for decades

By Philip Guelpa, 5 October 2019

Dangerous, antiquated conditions at the East New York bus depot are only one symptom of the severely deteriorated condition of the city’s transit system.

Workers protest closure of Wrightbus in Northern Ireland

By our reporters, 3 October 2019

Hundreds have been thrown out of work following the collapse of manufacturer Wrightbus last month.

French transit workers strike against attack on pensions

By Will Morrow, 14 September 2019

The trade unions are seeking to prevent any struggle against Macron’s attack through a series of isolated one-day actions over the next month.

Defending pensions against Macron requires an international political strategy

By Alex Lantier, 14 September 2019

The way forward to defend pensions and oppose the well-advanced drive towards fascistic police state rule is to turn to the international working class.

Boston transit system limps along as MBTA carries out disruptive repairs

By Andrew Timon, 14 September 2019

After five train derailments so far this year—and an astounding 43 from 2014 to 2018—along with mass delays and commuter outrage over fare hikes, the MBTA is in crisis mode.

New York transit agency seeks casualization of its workforce

By Alan Whyte, 4 September 2019

Management’s demands are nothing less than a declaration of war and an attempt to institute slave-labor conditions.

Australia: Train workers’ union calls off Melbourne strike

By David Cohen, 23 August 2019

Confronted by yet another sell-out, workers need to take their fight out of the hands of the RTBU bureaucracy, forming rank and file committees.

New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority approves plan to cut 2,700 jobs

By Isaac Finn, 9 August 2019

On July 24, the transportation authority board approved the “MTA Transformation Plan,” which includes the possible layoff of 2,700 workers and the use of contractors to replace retiring workers.

Australia: Melbourne rail workers vote for strike action

By Patrick O’Connor, 7 August 2019

While privatisation has provided new and lucrative profit opportunities for corporate operators, it has proven a disaster for rail workers and commuters.

Teamsters union boss with close ties to Chicago Democrats pleads guilty to extortion

By Jessica Goldstein, 5 August 2019

The agreement by John Coli Sr. to work with federal investigators could have wide-reaching consequences for the Democratic Party machine in Illinois and Chicago.

Public transport workers’ meeting Thursday to demand WikiLeaks founder’s freedom

London bus drivers show support for Julian Assange

By our reporters, 30 July 2019

Many London bus drivers, drawn from every corner of the world, including Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa and the Caribbean, have first-hand experience of the US war crimes and government corruption exposed by WikiLeaks since 2006.

Bus drivers in Massachusetts strike over wages and healthcare

By Elliott Vernon, 6 July 2019

Bus drivers are seeking wage increases consistent with the cost of living in Martha’s Vineyard as well as improvements in safety, disciplinary procedures and healthcare.

Sri Lankan railway unions cave in to government’s strike ban

By Saman Gunadasa, 1 July 2019

The RTUA’s betrayal has once again demonstrated that workers cannot defend their democratic rights and fight for jobs and decent working conditions through the trade unions.

Police and military crack down on spontaneous taxi strike in Matamoros, Mexico

By Eric London, 25 May 2019

Hundreds of taxi drivers blocked the international border crossing and several major thoroughfares in response to government efforts to decommission cabs.

“They spit on our solidarity”

Lyft cuts drivers’ rates in weeks following global rideshare strike

By Kayla Costa, 24 May 2019

Since rideshare drivers participated in a global one-day strike on May 8 to oppose the billion-dollar market frenzy for Uber’s IPO, Lyft drivers have reported compensation cuts of up to 27 percent.

As New York City transit contract expires, governor launches vindictive attack on workers

By Daniel de Vries and Alan Whyte, 18 May 2019

The union is keeping 40,000 workers on the job while governor Cuomo whips up hysteria over allegedly fraudulent overtime.

“They depend on us for their wealth and power”

Uber and Lyft drivers in Chicago, New York and California speak out against exploitation of gig economy workers

By our reporters, 10 May 2019

Drivers across the United States spoke out against the classification of Uber drivers as independent contractors as Uber heads into an Initial Public Offering worth billions of dollars.

Uber drivers to participate in global strike

By Leslie Murtagh and Jesse Thomas, 8 May 2019

Thousands of Uber and other ride-sharing drivers around the world will strike on Wednesday to protest low wages and the spread of casualized labor.

“The Teamsters is a company-controlled union”

UPS national contract imposed after supplemental fights

By George Marlowe, 1 May 2019

Following the ratification of a contentious Detroit supplemental agreement, the Teamsters union has imposed its sellout national contract on more than 250,000 UPS workers.

Teamsters working with YRC trucking companies to impose concessions contract

By Steve Filips, 9 April 2019

A tentative agreement has been announced between the company and the union while workers are being kept in the dark in order to forestall opposition to what is undoubtedly another sellout deal.

Hundreds of Uber and Lyft drivers strike in Los Angeles

By Dan Conway, 27 March 2019

The strike was triggered by Uber’s recent announcement to cut drivers’ per-mile compensation in Los Angeles and part of nearby Orange County by 25 percent.

Canada: Train derailment kills three, exposes terrible working conditions

By Penny Smith, 16 March 2019

CP Rail is lobbying Transport Canada to abandon a new rule it introduced following last month’s derailment, calling it too "time-consuming."

Boston: Unanimous opposition to MBTA fare hike at public hearing

By John Marion and Kate Randall, 2 March 2019

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is planning to impose fare increases averaging 6.3 percent on its bus, subway and commuter rail riders effective July 1.

“There’s been a blackout from the union”

Teamsters locals use anti-democratic loopholes and deceit to impose sellout agreements

By Erik Schreiber, 21 February 2019

Adding insult to injury following the imposition of the national UPS contract last year, the Teamsters union is using anti-democratic procedures to ram through local supplemental agreements by overriding the express will of the membership.

"Precision Scheduled Railroading” brings layoffs and cuts to US railroads

By Jeff Lusanne, 19 February 2019

The fraudulent concept of Precision Scheduled Railroading, which has the real goal of pumping railroad stock prices, has spread to most major US railroads, bringing layoffs and cuts.

Germany: Public transport strike paralyzes Berlin

By our reporters, 16 February 2019

For much of Friday, all subways and trams in the capital stood still and most buses remained in their depots.

“We are just another package that can be replaced”

FedEx, UPS workers outraged after Illinois truck driver dies on the job in extreme cold weather

By George Marlowe, 2 February 2019

William L. Murphy, a 69-year-old FedEx truck driver, is one of at least 23 people in the Midwest who have been killed by record cold temperatures this week.

Security personnel at German airports continue protest strikes

By K. Nesan and Marianne Arens, 12 January 2019

The work stoppages make clear the enormous anger of security staff and their willingness to fight.

RMT union cancels three strikes on London Underground

By Angela Austin, 24 December 2018

Underground rail workers have been involved in a series of disputes and strikes over worsening working conditions, staff shortages and victimisations.

UPS worker dies of heart attack; UPS Freight lays off part-timers over holidays

Workplace nightmare after Teamsters sellout

By Will Morrow, 22 December 2018

Peak season is the most profitable of the year and UPS earns billions in profits on the back of countless workers’ broken bones, ripped fingers and deaths.

Frente Amplio and Piñera government in Chile suppress 36-day dockworkers’ strike

By Andrea Lobo, 22 December 2018

The FA worked alongside its Morenoite satellites and the trade union to isolate the striking workers at a time of growing social unrest in Chile and across the world.

No to driver only operated services at West Midland Trains! For a national mobilisation of rail workers

By Michael Barnes, 24 November 2018

Drivers at West Midlands Trains are resisting a coordinated effort by the private train operator Abellio and rail unions to impose Driver Only trains in 2020.

Canada Post workers need socialist strategy to defy and defeat Liberals’ back-to-work law

By Roger Jordan, 24 November 2018

Working people across Canada must come to the defence of the 50,000 Canada Post workers whose struggle is now being criminalized by the Liberal government.

New Zealand rail union enforces another pro-company pay deal

By our correspondent, 10 November 2018

In 2016, the Labour Party-dominated Greater Wellington Regional Council privatised the region's commuter rail service, to save $NZ100 million over 15 years at the expense of jobs, wages and conditions.

Break the isolation of UPS Freight workers! Form rank-and-file committees to unite workers against the company!

By the WSWS UPS Workers Newsletter, 10 November 2018

If approved, the contract would create a new tier of lower-paid drivers, maintain poverty-level wages of part-time warehouse dockworkers, and continue the undermining of full-time positions.

Tube workers’ strike brings much of London to a halt

By Peter Austin, 9 November 2018

The tube strikes express the anger of workers after a decade of budget cuts, reductions in real wages, longer work weeks and an increase in working weekends as agreed by the unions.

As workers’ opposition grows to Teamsters contract, UPS Freight prepares for strike

By Will Morrow, 3 November 2018

Workers voted by more than 62 percent to reject the UPS Freight contract on October 5.

New Zealand: Bus union ends Wellington strike

By Tom Peters, 3 November 2018

The transport unions have sought to divide and demoralise workers and subordinate them to the Labour Party-led government.

Funeral to be held today for UPS worker Andy Schanding, killed on the job in Lexington, Kentucky

By Will Morrow, 27 October 2018

Andy, 43, leaves behind a loving family, including his wife of 21 years, Sarah Dixon Schanding, a son Elliot and daughter Emilee.

Comptroller’s report details crisis of New York’s decaying transit system

By Alan Whyte, 25 October 2018

The statistics highlight a fiscal and infrastructure disaster in the making.

New Zealand rail union promotes sellout at Wellington meeting

By our reporter, 19 October 2018

Wellington rail workers employed by Transdev and Hyundai Rotem held stopwork meetings called by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union to ratify yet another pro-company agreement.

Widespread opposition to Teamsters’ override of UPS workers’ contract rejection

By our reporters, 15 October 2018

A worker from southern California reported that during balloting on the contract, UPS management asked workers how they voted and whether they wanted to change their vote.

As APWU keeps workers on the job

US Postal Service workers protest Trump’s privatization plans

By George Marlowe, 12 October 2018

Postal workers in more than 140 cities protested Trump’s privatization proposals while unions keep 200,000 workers on the job weeks after their contract expired on September 20.

Another train derailment in New York strands thousands

By Guillaume Garnier, 12 October 2018

The neglect of infrastructure maintenance for decades has allowed the conditions of the subway and interstate rail systems to physically collapse.

Teamsters union defies “no” vote, declares UPS contract ratified

By Will Morrow, 6 October 2018

Workers voted by 54.7 percent to reject the sellout contract backed by UPS management and the Teamsters union, as other UPS workers also rejected sellout contracts.

UK: No to Driver Only Trains in any form, mobilise against rail union sellout

By Michael Barnes, 6 October 2018

The struggle by rail workers in defense of jobs is in danger, due to the systematic sabotage of their fight by the unions.

Teamsters head threatens to impose UPS contract even if workers reject it

By Will Morrow, 5 October 2018

As far as the union is concerned, workers have the right to vote, as long as they vote the right way.

As voting for drivers, warehouse workers concludes

UPS aircraft mechanics reject Teamsters contract proposal

By Jerry White, 4 October 2018

In a blow to the Teamsters, aircraft mechanics and other UPS Airlines workers in Louisville, Kentucky, defeated a sellout deal pushed by the union and a federal mediator.

New Zealand: Wellington bus drivers vote for indefinite strike

By our correspondent, 4 October 2018

Drivers threaten to walk out against attacks on wages, jobs and conditions.

Widespread opposition to sellout UPS contract in run-up to Friday vote deadline

By our reporters, 3 October 2018

The Teamsters’ strategy of lies has been developed in collaboration with BerlinRosen, the Democratic Party-aligned public relations firm.

As Teamsters pushes for “yes” vote on concessions contract

UPS unveils $1 billion cost-cutting “transformation plan”

By Will Morrow, 15 September 2018

At a conference for Wall Street investors on Thursday, UPS management unveiled the details of their plans to slash more than $1 billion in global annual spending.

Australia: Aurizon coal train crews face union sell-out

By Patrick Davies, 1 September 2018

The Rail Tram and Bus Union is working to conclude yet another regressive enterprise agreement covering coal haulage crews in the Hunter Valley.

“The Teamsters is not a voice for us”

UPS workers respond to Teamsters campaign of blackmail

By our reporters, 25 August 2018

UPS workers throughout the US continue to express opposition to the sellout deal that Teamsters officials and corporate management are trying to strong-arm them into ratifying.

New Zealand transport workers’ jobs and conditions under attack

By our correspondents, 25 August 2018

Rail and bus workers face a sustained assault by companies hired by the Greater Wellington Regional Council to run passenger services.

The Teamsters/UPS conspiracy to slash workers’ health care

By Kayla Costa, 23 August 2018

The current effort of the Teamsters to push through a concessions contract follows a series of attacks on UPS workers, including a scheme adopted in 2013 to cut health care benefits.

Anger over sell-out pay deal at Sheffield Supertram

By Laura Tiernan, 22 August 2018

Under the new agreement, pay will reportedly rise by just £1,700 over three years for a Supertram driver and £1,600 for conductors, far below rates for drivers and conductors at Manchester Metrolink who are covered by the same union.

“The whole world is watching us”

Teamsters local meeting erupts in anger as union official calls UPS workers’ poverty wages “subjective”

By Norisa Diaz, 21 August 2018

Teamsters official Andy Marshall told the room of 100 UPS workers that “in a perfect world” workers would get what they wanted, but “when I was a kid, I wanted a pony.”

Arbitration panel cuts real wages and health care benefits for Washington DC Metro workers

By Nick Barrickman, 20 August 2018

The amount awarded to the public employees averages to a yearly pay increase of little more than half the annual rate of inflation.

Australia: Transport union cancels Victorian bus drivers strike

By Oscar Grenfell, 17 August 2018

The TWU’s suppression of the stoppage was the outcome of a sordid back-room conspiracy, involving the union, the companies and the Victorian state Labor government.

Opposition mounts to UPS-Teamsters conspiracy as union announces contract for airline mechanics

By Will Morrow, 16 August 2018

There is growing support for the WSWS UPS Workers Newsletter’s call for the election of rank-and-file committees in every warehouse and hub to coordinate opposition.

Audit examines the decline of New York’s Long Island Rail Road

By Alan Whyte and A. Woodson, 16 August 2018

Last year, an estimated 9.2 million commuters experienced late or canceled trains.

Break the UPS-Teamsters conspiracy! Mobilize opposition to the sellout contract!

By the WSWS UPS Workers Newsletter, 14 August 2018

The Teamsters union is keeping workers totally in the dark, five days after its endorsement of the cost-cutting contract.

A second “summer of hell” for riders of New Jersey Transit

By Mark Ferretti, 13 August 2018

Understaffing, inadequate pay for employees, and underfunding are contributing to a rash of delays and cancellations that leave reliable and safe travel on New Jersey Transit in doubt.

Sri Lankan unions sell out railway workers and call off strike

By W.A. Sunil, 13 August 2018

Railway workers must reject the unions’ betrayal of their longstanding salary demands and build action committees of rank-and-file workers on an alternative socialist program.

Striking Sri Lankan railway workers need a political perspective

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 11 August 2018

Over 4,000 workers, including engine drivers, guards, station masters and supervisory managers, walked out on Wednesday to demand higher pay.

Ryanair faces largest pilots’ strike in its history

By Marianne Arens, 9 August 2018

On Friday, simultaneous strikes against Ryanair will take place in several European countries. While workers’ anger has grown, the unions are doing everything to isolate the strike.

Construction workers building UPS super-hub in Indianapolis walk off job

By Adam Mclean, 6 August 2018

The video of a wildcat walkout by construction workers in Indiana has been shared almost 100,000 times on Facebook.

As transit union continues to ignore its members’ overwhelming vote to strike

Washington, D.C. transit authority moves to privatize bus maintenance services

By Nick Barrickman, 6 August 2018

The provocative move comes amid a heated dispute regarding the privatization of public services between the transit authority and 8,000 Metro workers, members of ATU Local 689.

“The union is essentially a puppet for the company”

What is life like for a permanent part-time UPS worker?

By Will Morrow, 3 August 2018

The WSWS spoke with Sean, a 32-year-old part-time UPS warehouse worker, who described the conditions for UPS workers, the abuse of workers by management, and the complicity of the Teamsters.

Teamsters union keeps 240,000 UPS workers on the job as contract expires

By Will Morrow, 2 August 2018

The union is aware that there is widespread opposition to the deal and is seeking to buy time to wear down the workers and impose a contract demanded by the company.

Ryanair’s mass sacking threat raises need for globally coordinated struggle of airline workers

By Steve James, 2 August 2018

The role of the unions in the airline and other industries is to isolate any struggle, impose the demands of the companies and prevent a unified fight of the entire working class.

Washington, D.C. metro union seeks to bury members’ strike vote

By Nick Barrickman, 2 August 2018

After an overwhelming vote by its members to strike in July, ATU Local 689, with a membership of over 8,000 public transit workers, has sought to drag out discussions between it and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.

UK Parliament “fake news” report demands sweeping internet censorship

By Robert Stevens, 1 August 2018

The report calls for a crack down on individuals and political organisations, social media and alternative media sources that expose the plans of the imperialist powers.

Teamsters union blames opposition to sellout contract on “internet trolls”

By Will Morrow, 30 July 2018

The union’s campaign recalls the United Auto Workers’ denunciations of exposures of its 2015 sellout contract as “fake news.”

UK: South Western Railway conductors to strike over Driver Only Operation

By Tom Holling, 26 July 2018

South Western Railway is Britain’s busiest commuter train network and transports more than 4 million passengers a week in and out of London Waterloo.

After overwhelming vote for strike action

Washington, D.C. transit union conspires with Metro officials while keeping members in the dark

By Nick Barrickman, 24 July 2018

Metro workers have been without a contract since 2016, when negotiations broke down over questions of pay cuts, job security and privatization of services.

Teamsters union blackmails UPS workers: Approve contract or your wages will be cut

By Will Morrow, 23 July 2018

Teamsters Local 647 president Brian Hammond sent a letter to UPS workers that wage increases will be diverted to their pensions if they fail to ratify the contract.

Democrats, Teamsters and UAW promote deal to continue robbing pensions

By Kayla Costa, 21 July 2018

The Butch-Lewis Act of 2017, backed by the Democrats and unions, only serves as a new way to cut pensions down to poverty levels.

Washington D.C. transit union calls for “cooling off period” after Metro workers overwhelmingly vote to strike

By Nick Barrickman, 21 July 2018

The struggle for decent pay, job protections and high quality benefits be removed from the hands of the ATU bureaucrats immediately.

UK: Sheffield Supertram workers set to continue strike

By Tony Robson, 20 July 2018

Through its passive approach to the blatant intimidation being meted out to its members, Unite is signalling that it remains the most reliable option in blocking a resurgence of militant opposition in its ranks.

“We should be governing ourselves in this fight”

UPS workers’ opposition grows to Teamsters sellout

By Will Morrow, 19 July 2018

The proposed deal maintains poverty level wages for part-time workers, introduces a new lower-paid “hybrid” worker, and does nothing to address unsafe working conditions.

“Profit over people? The people make those profits possible”

UPS workers respond to surge in company stock following Teamsters’ sellout contract

By Kayla Costa, 18 July 2018

A driver with 12 years told the WSWS the union was “making deals with the company to suit them, not the members.”

Washington, D.C., metro workers vote overwhelmingly to authorize strike action

By Nick Barrickman, 18 July 2018

The “yes” vote by 8,000 Washington, D.C., transit workers sets the stage for a possible strike in the US capital, the first in 40 years, amid threats of jail time by the Democratic Party city administration.

Wall Street celebrates Teamsters deal with UPS

By Kayla Costa, 17 July 2018

UPS workers are in a direct fight with the Teamsters union, which is seeking to impose management’s dictates and defend the financial interests of the union executives.

As Jeff Bezos’ wealth reaches $150 billion

Unions strangle strike efforts by European Amazon workers on Prime Day

By Will Morrow and Genevieve Leigh, 17 July 2018

Prime Day is treated as a virtual public holiday by the corporate media, akin to Black Friday, but it is synonymous with increased exploitation for Amazon and other shipping workers.

An interview with a part-time UPS worker

We all see “the union being paid out and working with the company”

By Will Morrow, 16 July 2018

Part-time workers make up more than two-thirds of United Parcel Service’s 230,000 employees and are paid as little as $10 per hour.

“Now we’re all slaves, no matter what color you are”

UPS workers oppose sellout contract, warn of union fraud to pass agreement

By Kayla Costa, 14 July 2018

The union and company are seeking to impose a major new concession on workers after UPS posted $7.5 billion in profits in 2017.

As workers’ opposition grows

Teamsters union extends UPS contract deadline to impose sell-out deal

By Will Morrow, 13 July 2018

The union is seeking to delay any vote on the contract after more than 93 percent of UPS workers voted to authorize strike action last month.

Teamsters resort to lies and intimidation to push sellout deal at UPS

By Hector Cordon, 29 June 2018

Teamsters officials are slandering opponents of the deal, which will introduce a new lower-paid tier of “hybrid drivers”

Petrobras chief resigns as Brazilian truckers end strike

By Miguel Andrade, 4 June 2018

The truckers' blockades were supported by an overwhelming majority as an act of resistance against the economic suffering endured by hundreds of millions of Brazilians.

French rail workers strike at a crossroads

By Kumaran Ira and Alex Lantier, 1 June 2018

As the unions begin calling to put an end to the strike, the strike must be taken out of the hands of the unions and waged on an independent, revolutionary perspective.

Teamsters scuttle Canadian Pacific Rail strike, laud Trudeau

By Keith Jones, 31 May 2018

The Teamsters have provided no details of the proposed four-year agreement, let alone given the striking train drivers and conductors the opportunity to study and vote on it prior to forcing them back to work.

French rail workers protest privatization plans

By V. Gnana and Senthooran Ravee, 31 May 2018

Rail workers were sympathetic to the Socialist Equality Party’s call for the formation of committees of action to unify the struggles against President Macron.