Truckers Unite in California
From: Ernesto Nevarez firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent: Saturday, August 27, 2005
TRUCKERS UNITE! Friday report; Labor solidarity at its best!
Please distribute widely:
THURSDAY NIGHT: 250 troqueros on the Hyundai landbridge had a young
inexperienced negotiating committee refuse Calko's last and final offer.
Friday morning about 50 of them showed up at the company ready to resume
negotiations. There weren't any as the work had been given to 3 other
It wasn't a bluff.
The 50 troqueros moved to C-20, CUT, and began picketing. The Innercity
drivers pulled out. The Southern County drivers pulled out their loads and
didn't return. Apparently their GM, Mr. Griley, is pretty wise and realized
that the situation was serious. LCT kept working. One of the Calko
strikers, El Chino, was distributing flyers to their drivers and one to a
private car INSIDE the CUT staging yard and a gun was brandished. El Chino
had two witnesses.
At lunch time the ILWU BA's were called because our picket signs identified
our employers as Hyundai/CUT and Calko. We informed them of what happened
to El Chino and that there were witnesses and that there was at least one
gun on their premises. ALL the ILWU pulled out of CUT, most likely in
solidarity but I can't officially say or I am not sure. In 17 years of
organizing this harbor this has NEVER happened before!!!!! I hate to use
names but one of the clerks is very respected by the drivers and she came
out and rocked the house with a speech about solidarity.
The scabbing LCT drivers were locked in the terminal for the rest of the
day. News of the ILWU pull-out spread fast and within an hour we had over
150 picketers and the honking of passing trucks was deafening. Troqueros
from all over left their work, got out of the lines at the terminals, and
cruised C20 to see in their own eyes the unbelievable. There outside of CUT
were Longshoremen and Troqueros standing together!!!! Needless to say
Hyundai gave the landbridge back to Calko and the troqueros got a $5 raise.
This is our version of "job security." We later found out that every major
trucking company had been called to move the landbridge and none of the
other trucking companies accepted knowing of the "labor curse" that the
Hyundai landbridge carried. While I was getting some water down the block
the drivers suddenly huddled and someone was speaking very loud.
Apparently, a troquero from another company had parked his rig, got out, and
starting yelling to them to organize and show up September 5. It ain't just
me. There are a lot of agitators out there mobilizing for September 5. It
is spreading NATIONWIDE! Will all troqueros come together on September 5 and
call for a future coastwide/nationwide recognition strike?!!! In the midst
of peak season? Will there be a holloween, thanksgiven, or Santa Clause
Yesterday Calko troqueros again won respect and all port troqueros shared in
the pride. About 3:30 the strike was settled and Calko drivers met and
tried to find a way to thank the ILWU. Some were talking about pizzas next
week, others a carne asada. In the end everyone agreed that the best way to
thank them was for every last of the 250 Calko drivers to show up to the
labor day parade in mutual solidarity.
Later in the day there was a very important meeting by the drivers of "el
hoyo" whom represents about 900 drivers. They called off any unilateral
action and agreed to join the September 5 movement. I thought for sure that
they would go on strike which would trigger a port wide shutdown. Luckily
it didn't materialize.
September 5 will be big!
Last year on May Day history was made as all trucking in the state of
California came to a halt.
Yesterday history was made as the ILWU has made a solidarity decision and
September 5 the course of history will be set.
still in disbelief!!!!!!
(from me personally, thanx)