More Than a Dozen Unfair Labor Practice Charges Filed by Workers
PHOENIX, Aug. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Workers at US Foods Arizona operations filed more than a dozen charges with the National Labor Relations Board yesterday alleging the company has violated a Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals order from 2009. The charges against US Foods include instances of threatening and interrogating workers; issuing unwarranted discipline against union supporters; unilaterally changing work policies and conditions; withholding pay and falsifying company records to discriminate against union supporters; and unlawfully denying employees union representation.
In 2009, workers at US Foods in Arizona won union representation with Teamsters Local 104 in Phoenix after a year-long fight to claim their rights under United States labor laws, and following a settlement handed down by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). At the time, Region 28 of the NLRB cited US Foods for violating the law more than 200 times during the workers' union organizing drive, the most charges in the history of the region.
At the time of the settlement, the violations were considered so egregious that the NLRB filed an enforcement order with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to protect workers in the event that US Foods violated the settlement agreement. The Teamsters' charges have triggered an investigation to verify that US Foods violated the court order.
"We formed a union so that workers could negotiate for better working conditions and to protect ourselves from bullying and unfair treatment," said Ryan Proctor, a US Foods warehouse worker in Phoenix. "Despite the settlement US Foods signed three years ago, management has continued to harass us and create trumped-up reasons for disciplining workers who seek union protection."
"Our members negotiated a contract with US Foods and we expect the company to follow it," said Andy Marshall, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 104. "But US Foods' illegal behavior has become so deplorable that we had no choice but to file these charges with the labor board."
US Foods, which distributes food and related products to restaurants, military bases and hospitals, is owned by private equity giants KKR and CD&R. KKR and CD&R purchased US Foods (then U.S. Foodservice) in 2007, saddling the distributor with approximately $5 billion in debt.
The Teamsters represent about 4,000 employees at US Foods at 25 distribution centers throughout the nation.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information.