Passenger Transportation

  • Teamsters Local 174 to Call One-Day Unfair Labor Practice Strike Tomorrow at First Student

    November 29, 2017 Strike Will Protest First Student’s Illegal Actions

    November 28, 2017

    In an effort to mitigate any hardship faced by Seattle parents, Teamsters Local 174 has decided to announce in advance there will be a one-day strike held tomorrow, November 29, 2017. The strike by the group of more than 400 First Student school bus drivers will impact all yellow bus service to the Seattle School District. The Unfair Labor Practice strike will protest First Student’s unilateral change and implementation of an inferior medical plan for its employees – an illegal action under the National Labor Relations Act, as healthcare is the subject of negotiations and cannot be changed without bargaining with the employees’ Union.

    Teamsters Local 174 does not typically announce strikes in advance; however, in this case, the Union and its members wished to give Seattle parents adequate notice to make arrangements for their children. Bus service should resume on Thursday, November 30; however, a longer strike can be called at any time if a deal is not reached.

  • FMCSA Adds New Opioids to Drug Testing Panel Effective January 1, 2018

    New Regulations will Test for Vicodin, OxyContin, Lorta, Norco, Dilaudid, etc. November 21, 2017 Beginning January 1, 2018, the US Department of Transportations’ Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will expand its drug testing panel to include four synthetic opioid drugs: hydrocodone, hydromorphone, oxycodone, and oxymorphone. These substances are more commonly known as Vicodin, OxyContin, […]

  • After Mediation Breaks Down, Pressure Mounts on First Student as Strike Could be Called at Any Moment

    Letters from School Board and Seattle Mayor Make Clear that Labor Dispute with Teamsters Local 174 is First Student’s Responsibility to Solve November 15, 2017 After a complete breakdown in mediated negotiations between Teamsters Local 174 and First Student, avoiding a strike by over 400 Seattle school bus drivers seems all but impossible. First Student […]

  • Meeting Between First Student and Teamsters Local 174 Produces Next Steps; Strike Threat Still Looms

    November 3, 2017 Yesterday afternoon, there was a meeting at the Teamsters Local 174 Union Hall between representatives from the Teamsters and First Student. The meeting, which included decision-makers from both sides, was not a bargaining session; instead, it was an attempt to assess the lay of the land and discuss next steps as First […]

  • “Sorry You Have Cancer”: This 26-year old First Student Driver’s Battle for Healthcare is a Battle for her Life

    October 31, 2017 At just 26 years old, school bus driver Olivia Moore has fought more hard battles than most of us will in a lifetime. She lost her mother during childhood, battled homelessness, depression, and anxiety, and is now standing shoulder to shoulder with her coworkers in the most important battle of all: a […]

  • A Letter from Teamsters Local 174 to the Seattle School Board

    October 30, 2017 A letter was sent today from Teamsters Local 174 Secretary-Treasurer Rick Hicks to the Seattle School Board. The Board has continued to do nothing about the labor dispute between their transportation contractor First Student and its unionized workforce, who are proud members of Teamsters Local 174. A PDF copy of the letter is available here, […]

  • First Student Teamsters Speak Before the Seattle School Board

    October 18, 2017 It was an electrifying evening at the Seattle School Board meeting, as dozens of First Student drivers attended the meeting wearing their reflective vests and carrying handmade signs. The signs, along with the energetic presence of the drivers themselves, made it clear to the Seattle School Board that this labor dispute does not […]

  • Teamsters at First Student Put Together Picket Signs for Possible Strike

    October 13, 2017 Teamsters Local 174 members at First Student came together today to work on making picket signs for a potential Unfair Labor Practice strike. All the signs were carefully waterproofed to prepare for Seattle’s inevitable autumn rain, and morale was high despite the unfortunate circumstance that First Student and the Seattle School District have put these […]

  • Strike Appears Imminent at First Student as Negotiations Break Down

    Unfair Labor Practices at Seattle School District Bus Contractor Threaten to Send up to 400 School Bus Drivers to the Street October 12, 2017 Negotiations between Teamsters Local 174 and Seattle School District bus contractor First Student broke down yesterday. The negotiations over healthcare and retirement – which affect over 400 school bus drivers in […]

  • Local 174 Members at First Student Vote to Authorize Strike Action

    School bus drivers authorize strike after their Employer refuses to provide healthcare or retirement security

    September 27, 2017

    School bus drivers at First Student gathered in the Local 174 Union Hall auditorium this past weekend to discuss and vote on the next step in their battle for healthcare and retirement security. After a nearly two-hour informational meeting, the workers voted by a resounding 96% margin in favor of authorizing a strike action against their Employer.

    First Student driver and Bargaining Committee member Renita Wright casts her ballot

    Negotiations over healthcare and pension have been going on for several months between First Student and the bus drivers, who have been members of Teamsters Local 174 since 2013. The group of approximately 450 school bus drivers ratified a contract last year that guaranteed their wages and language to protect their rights on the job; however, retirement and healthcare issues were not settled at that time. Instead, both sides agreed to reopen these issues in 2017.

    Now that the time has come to reach agreements on healthcare and pension, however, it has become clear that First Student never intended to take these issues seriously. “They came to the table, ostensibly ready to bargain healthcare, but then they couldn’t tell us what those costs would be, nor could they tell us what kind of budget the School Board had given them,” said Local 174 Director of Negotiations Patty Warren. “How are we supposed to bargain over numbers when we don’t even know what those numbers are? It just demonstrates that this company never really intended to reach an agreement with us. We are filing Unfair Labor Practice charges for Bad Faith Bargaining and Surface Bargaining as they never intended to reach an Agreement on these very important issues.”