Overnite-Teamsters NLRB settlement reveals Teamsters’ ugly underbelly
The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page (sorry, subscribers only), has an editorial entitled “The Teamster Promise” that excerpts from and links to the Teamsters’ NLRB settlement arising out of “a nasty–and ultimately unsuccessful–strike against Overnite Transportation Co.”
The posted notice, which is buried deep in the Teamsters’ website, is of course part of a “non-admit” settlement. The number of charges alone is mind-boggling. But, knowing NLRB practices, one must assume there was credible evidence some Teamster somewhere, engaged in every one of the following outrageous activities they have now promised not to do. I’m quoting extensively, as did the Journal, because it really covers the waterfront of union violence:
“WE WILL NOT brandish or carry any weapon of any kind, including, but not limited to, guns, knives, slingshots, rocks, ball bearings, liquid-filled balloons or other projectiles, sledge hammers, bricks, sticks, or two by fours . . ..
“WE WILL NOT use or threaten to use a weapon of any kind, including but not limited to guns, knives, slingshots, rocks, ball bearings, liquid-filled balloons or other projectiles, picket signs, sticks, sledge hammers, bricks, hot coffee, bottles, two by fours, lit cigarettes, eggs, or bags or balloons filled with excrement . . ..
WE WILL NOT damage, threaten to damage or attempt to damage any vehicle or equipment owned or operated by Overnite, its employees or security guards, by any means or manner, including but not limited by slingshots, rocks, ball bearings, liquid-filled balloons or other projectiles, knives, picket signs, sticks, sledge hammers, bricks, bottles, two by fours, eggs, or paint, or by tearing off mirrors, windshield wipers or antennas, or breaking windows.
WE WILL NOT disable or attempt to disable vehicles owned or operated by Ovemite, by any means or manner, including but not limited to disconnecting or otherwise severing air brake lines, padlocking doors, spraying substances in or otherwise jamming locks, stealing keys, puncturing radiators, cutting hoses or door cables, flattening tires or throwing, placing or otherwise spreading any nails, screws, star nails, jack rocks or similar devices capable of puncturing tires on any road surface.
WE WILL NOT endanger or impede the progress of or harass any non-striking employee or any employee of a neutral person doing business with Ovemite, while he or she is operating a company vehicle or his or her own personal vehicle, by forcing or attempting to force him or her off the road, blocking, delaying or limiting his or her access to or passage on any road, swerving toward, driving recklessly near, tailgating or braking abruptly in front of him or her, impeding his or her progress by speeding up and slowing down, driving at speeds below the legal minimums while in front of him or her.
WE WILL NOT endanger or impede the progress of or harass any non-striking employee or any employee of a neutral person doing business with Ovemite, while he or she is operating a company vehicle or his or her own personal vehicle, by jumping on vehicles, by attempting to open the doors of vehicles, by throwing paint on windshields, by using mirrors, laser pointers, spot lights or flash photography in the eyes of drivers, or by obstructing the view of drivers by holding picket signs over the windshields of vehicles.
WE WILL NOT engage in mass picketing or otherwise impede the ingress or egress of Ovemite employees or employees of any other employer to or from any Overnite service center or any facility of any neutral person doing business with Overnite or patrol or walk across the entrance of any Ovemite service center or a facility of any neutral person doing business with Overnite in such a manner as to impede or delay the ingress or egress of any individua1.
WE WILL NOT batter, assault, spit on, blow whistles loudly near a person’s ear, throw any liquid or solid object at, or attempt to assault any non-striking employee of Overnite or any member of his or her family or any employee of a neutral employee doing business with Overnite, or any security guard or supervisor or manager of a neutral employee doing business with Overnite in the presence of employees.
WE WILL NOT threaten to kill or inflict bodily harm, make throat slashing motions, make gun pointing motions, challenge or threaten to fight or assault employees, threaten to sexually assault non-striking employees or their family members, threaten to follow non-striking employees to their homes, use racial epithets or obscene gestures at non-striking employees or otherwise threaten unspecified reprisals on any non-striking employee of Overnite or any member of his or her family or any employee of a neutral employee doing business with Overnite, or on any security guard, supervisor or manager of Ovemite or neutral employers doing business with Ovemite in the presence of employees.
WE WILL NOT videotape or photograph any non-striking employees of Ovemite, or vehicles of Ovemite or of its nonstriking employees while engaging in coercive activity observed by or known by those being videotaped or photographed or threaten to release the photographs, names, addresses or phone numbers of non-striking employees in order to intimidate the non-striking employees.
WE WILL NOT prevent any non-striking employee from accessing an Ovemite vehicle or a personal vehicle or block Ovemite vehicles or the personal vehicles of non-striking Ovemite employees.
WE WILL NOT threaten to fine or cause the discharge of non-member employees because they cross a picket line or refuse to go on strike.
WE WILL NOT threaten to cause any employee’s discharge if they do not engage in a strike or picketing of Ovemite or of any neutral person doing business with Ovemite.
WE WILL NOT attempt to harass and intimidate employees or security guards on Ovemite property by using mirrors to reflect sunlight into the eyes of Ovemite drivers or use mirrors or laser pointers to shine light into the eyes or video cameras of security guards.
WE WILL NOT remove the personal property of non-striking employees from their personal vehicles.”
There you have it. While hopefully not every Teamsters’ local is equally disgusting, that’s their potential bag of tricks. Such conduct should be anticipated and prepared for by employers facing a Teamsters strike. And employees facing a decision about Teamsters representation should probably be given a copy of this notice as fair warning of what they might be getting into.