Illinois School Bus Workers Choose Teamsters Union

Oct 12, 2010, 17:15 ET from International Brotherhood of Teamsters

First Student Drivers, Aides and Crossing Guards Join Teamsters Local 777

WASHINGTON, Oct. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- First Student school bus drivers, aides and crossing guards in Belvidere, Illinois, have voted to join Teamsters Local 777 in Brookfield, seeking improvements to their working conditions. There are 162 workers in the bargaining unit.  



"We're looking forward to change for the better now that we're Teamsters. We need equal, fair pay levels and better safety," said Tammy Lukac, an eight-year driver with First Student in Belvidere.

Throughout the organizing drive the workers stood united, formed their own committee and spread the word about the importance of voting.

"They came together to improve their lives and protect what they have," said Elizabeth Gonzalez, a business agent with Local 777. "This group consists of a lot of women with children, a lot of families, and they stepped up and really stood together. They're really proud; we're all proud of what they've accomplished."

"These workers are dedicated professionals who transport our children and we are honored to welcome them as the newest school bus Teamster members," said Teamsters International Vice President John T. Coli, also President of Teamsters Joint Council 25.

The victory is the latest in an effort to organize private school bus and transit workers across the country. Drive Up Standards is a national campaign to improve safety, service and work standards in the private school bus and transit industry. Since the campaign began in 2006, more than 27,900 drivers, monitors, aides, mechanics and attendants have become Teamsters.

For more information on the Drive Up Standards campaign, go to:

Founded in 1903, the Teamsters Union represents more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

SOURCE International Brotherhood of Teamsters