I had the pleasure of attending the 29th International Convention the last week of July as an Alternate Delegate for 174. 1600 Delegates and Alternates from around the US, Canada and Puerto Rico, along with around 3000 guests, were in attendance. The Convention not only nominates candidates for the upcoming election of International Union Officers (be sure to vote when you get your ballot in the mail!), it also makes changes to the Constitution and passes resolutions. Joining together with over 5,000 Teamsters and guests was a truly amazing experience.
One of the notable changes to the constitution is strike benefits. The minimum weekly benefit has been changed from $100 to $150, the maximum amount has been increased from 4 times hour dues rate to five times your dues rate, and the benefits kick in after the 8th day on strike instead of after the end of the 2nd week. These changes increase our strength at the bargaining table and our ability to weather a strike. When combined with the Local strike fund, we have the power to strike when we need to and 174 is never afraid of a fight!