NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

EPI Study: UPS Strike -- Few Gains, Fewer Jobs

September 3, 1998

The Teamsters claim that employees "won" major economic gains by their strike against United Parcel Service last year; but analysts say the result has been fewer jobs.

A major issue leading to the strike was the demand by the union that UPS create more full-time jobs that could be filled by part-time workers. However, many part-time UPS employees are college students, and management said they didn't want full-time UPS jobs.

  • In July 1998 UPS notified the Teamsters Union it would be unable to create the 2,000 new full-time jobs called for in the first year of the contract, since UPS volume is down more than 460,000 packages.
  • Today, UPS employs 16,400 fewer persons than it did one year ago, including 10,000 union jobs.
  • And the number of part-time employees at the end of May 1998 was 15,000 less than May 1997.

Furthermore, compared to UPS's final offer before the strike, under the post-strike agreement part-time employees will earn less over the entire five years of the contract, and full-time employees will have gains only in the final year. The major reason economic losses for Teamsters workers were so high was that the final settlement excluded two large profit-sharing bonuses the company offered workers.

Source: "Assessing the Teamsters Strike Against UPS -- One Year Later," E-Mail Trend, September 3, 1998, Employment Policy Foundation, , 1015 15th St., N.W., Suite 1200, Washington, D.C. 20005, (202) 789-8685.


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