3,300 UPS Pilots Vow to Strike w/ Teamsters Drivers – Erie Hotel Facing Heat for Housing Scabs – Universal Facing Investigation Over Trimming Shade on Picket Lines 

Folks, 

Greetings from the Burgh, where I am slowly getting back in the swing of things after struggling with some over-exhaustion and Long Covid-related issues. 

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3,300 UPS Pilots Vow to Strike w/ Teamsters Drivers

With 340,000 Teamsters at UPS moving towards a strike on July 31st, the Indepedent Pilots Association (IPA), representing 3,300 UPS pilots, has declared that they would not cross any picket lines in the event of a strike. 

“If the Teamsters are on strike, we will honor that strike and we will not fly,” IPA spokesman Brian Gaudet told FreightWaves. 

The small independent union has no strike fund and has informed its members to prepare financially to support any strike by UPS drivers. 

“We don’t have a strike fund. If you’re a UPS pilot and you’re being asked to not cross that picket line, that means you stay in your hotel, you don’t show up, you don’t fly and it’s on your nickel,” Gaudet told FreightWaves. 

For more, check out FreightWaves.

Teamsters President Askes Biden to Not Intervene in UPS Strike

Last year, President Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress intervened to stop a strike of railroad workers, using their federal power to impose a contract on these workers that the majority of railroad workers had previously voted down. 

Now, Teamsters President Sean O’Brien is asking Biden not to intervene if UPS workers go on strike at the end of the month. 

“My neighborhood where I grew up in Boston, if two people had a disagreement and you had nothing to do with it – you just kept walking,” O’Brien told the AP. “We don’t need anybody getting involved in this fight.” 

For more, check out AP. 

Louisville Coffee Workers Walk Out Across Chain 

Louisville has been a hotbed of organizing coffee shop workers. In March, over 200 coffee shop workers at a dozen Heine Brothers locations won a historic first contract. 

Now, workers at Sunergos, a local coffee shop chain, and Starbucks workers are walking out together to demand first contracts from their employers. 

“It honestly makes me kind of emotional,” Sunergos worker Bekah Ryherd told WDRB about the cross-union solidarity. We’ve been at this since January, and it’s just very exciting to have the support of so many people. Because it can feel really discouraging in the day-to-day.”

For more, check out WDRB. 

LA City Controller to Investigate Universal Studios for Cutting Shade on Picket Lines 

Earlier this week, workers for Universal Studios trimmed trees that lined a picket line that striking writers and actors have been using. The trees provided the only shade on the picket line as temperatures have consistently been above 90 degrees. 

Now, LA City Controller Kenneth Meija is vowing to investigate Universal Studios for cutting the trees, which were the city’s property. 

“Our Office is investigating the tree trimming that occurred outside Universal Studios where workers, writers, and actors are exercising their right to picket,” tweeted Meija. “The trimmed trees are LA City managed street trees.” 

For more, check out the LA Times on how workers are braving the heat on picket lines this summer. 

Erie Hotel Facing Heat for Housing Scabs 

Last Friday, UE locomotive workers on strike at Wabtec in Erie picketed the Avalon Hotel and Conference Center in downtown Erie. The union says that the hotel is housing “scabs” being brought to replace striking workers. 

“They (the hotel) are hurting our efforts to get a good contract,” UE Eastern Regional President George Wasmunski told the Erie Times-News. “Whether or not they want to be a part of it, they are now a part of it.”

For more, check out the Erie Times News. 

Links & News Elsewhere 

Alright, yinz, that’s all for us today. Keep sending emails, tips, story ideas, and cooking recipes to [email protected] 

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See yinz tomorrow. 

Love & Solidarity, 

Melk 

About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter and alumni of the Guardian. In addition to filing over 1,800 stories from 46 states, Elk was the only American reporter in the room with Lula on the morning of the election & traveled with him to the Oval Office. Credited by the Washington Post for being the first reporter to track the strike wave systematically, Elk started Payday Report using his NLRB settlement from being illegally fired for union organizing in 2015. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and works frequently in Rio de Janeiro, where he attended college at PUC-Rio. He speaks both Portuguese and Pittsburghese fluently. His email is [email protected]