The impacts of Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Commonwealth of PA
Cole Scandaglia - IBT
On November 16, 2023 in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, –State Senator Katie Muth (D-Chester/Montgomery/Berks), chair of the Pennsylvania Senate Democratic Policy Committee, today joined Senator Jimmy Dillon (D-Philadelphia) and Senator John Kane (D-Chester/Delaware) to co-host a public hearing to explore the potential impacts of Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Commonwealth. Participants in the hearing included Amaya Capellan, Chief Information Officer, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; Angela Ferritto, President, Pennsylvania AFL-CIO; Cole Scandaglia, Senior Legislative Representative, International Brotherhood of Teamsters; Dr. Dajiang Liu, Professor and Vice Chairman for Research at the Department of Public Health Sciences, PSU School of Medicine; Dr. Shandong Wu, Founding Director, Pittsburgh Center for AI Innovation in Medical Imaging.
The PA Conference of Teamsters would like to thank Brother Cole Scandaglia, Senior Legislative Representative, International Brotherhood of Teamsters for testifying at this hearing on behalf of the PA Conference of Teamsters on the impacts of Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Commonwealth of PA.
Brother Scandaglia gave an outstanding presentation on conveying the concerns the PA Conference of Teamsters has on AI’s likely devastation of family sustaining Teamster jobs on the road and in warehouses.
The PA Conference of Teamsters would also like to commend Brother John Mataya, State Legislative Director, Department of Political and Legislative Action- International Brotherhood of Teamsters for his input and help with this hearing. Brother Mataya was unable to testify because of a scheduling conflict. However, he referred Brother Scandaglia to speak on behalf of the PA Conference. Both Teamster Brothers took the time from their hectic schedules to support the PA Conference of Teamsters and the PA Conference greatly appreciates them stepping up to address an issue that will have an impact on Teamster jobs in Pennsylvania and across the country.
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Teamsters Labor Day 1917 - click to enlarge
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TEAMSTERS ADDRESS MISCLASSIFICATION BEFORE PENNSYLVANIA TASK FORCE
Teamsters Local 776 Business Agent Dave Licht
Last week, representatives from the Pennsylvania Conference of Teamsters addressed the Pennsylvania Joint Task Force on Misclassification of Employees. The bipartisan, legislatively-referred task force began in 2021 and was charged with assessing the impacts of worker misclassification in the state and coming up with recommendations for the Pennsylvania General Assembly to address the issue.
In March 2022, the task force presented its initial findings, which correctly identified many of the harms misclassification brings to workers, communities and businesses. Based on state data, the report found that more than 49,000 Pennsylvania employers currently misclassify at least one worker. Additionally, up to $124 million in state revenue has been lost due to misclassification, and workers lost more than $176 million due to injury and illness without workers compensation insurance (which employers avoid through misclassification).
Teamsters Local 776 Business Agent Dave Licht, Teamsters State Legislative Director John Mataya and Teamsters International Attorney Willie Burden all presented before the task force. They spoke to new forms of misclassification that the preliminary report did not address, especially at employers like Amazon.
“Misclassification robs workers, hollows out communities, erodes tax bases, and punishes employers who do the right thing,” said Licht. “By allowing employers to get away with misclassification, lawmakers are creating a race to the bottom.”
“The task force’s recommendations are a great starting point – a strong ABC test, appropriate penalties like stop work orders, and properly funding investigative staff, to name a few,” said Mataya. “However, there are forms of misclassification that the report overlooks, including Amazon’s DSP [Delivery Service Provider] model.”
Burden walked the task force through how Amazon uses subcontracting companies to shift liability to others through subcontracting with so-called DSP companies that employ the vast majority of Amazon’s delivery drivers. However, while a worker may be employed by a DSP on paper, Amazon exercises near-total control of the workers – mandating they operate Amazon vans, wear Amazon uniforms, drive Amazon-directed routes, and follow other Amazon directives.
“We hope that when the General Assembly receives the final misclassification report, they take swift action to address these abuses,” said William Hamilton, President of the Pennsylvania Conference of Teamsters and International Vice President. “Pennsylvania lawmakers will soon have the choice to stand either with workers or with corporations taking advantage of communities and taxpayers.”
“The days of billion-dollar companies like Amazon abusing and misclassifying workers are coming to an end,” said Teamsters General President Sean M. O’Brien. “Workers and taxpayers have been left holding the bag for too long and the Teamsters will continue to support meaningful reform.”
Rick is a Teamster and was a member of Local 776
Sean M. O’Brien Sworn in as the 11th General President of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters; General Executive Board Meets to Plan for the Future
(WASHINGTON) – Sean M. O’Brien was sworn in today as the new General President of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. General Secretary-Treasurer Fred Zuckerman and the newly-elected General Executive Board also took the oath of office. Following a swearing-in ceremony, O’Brien and his team went straight to work, holding their first board meeting to discuss the priorities of the new administration.
“We have a lot of work ahead of us, but our team is tested and ready to lead this great International into the future. It’s a new day for the Teamsters Union,” O’Brien said. “Under this administration, we will be a bigger, faster, stronger union.”
A fourth-generation Teamster from Boston, O’Brien will bring a more militant, grassroots approach to taking on employers and will prioritize mobilizing rank-and-file members to get involved in the union.
“By uniting Teamsters across the country, we will be a force to be reckoned with when it comes to organizing workers, negotiating strong contracts and fighting back against those who seek to take away our hard-won rights,” said Zuckerman of Louisville, Ky. “We are ready to get to work.”
The O’Brien-Zuckerman Teamsters United Slate was elected by the membership on Nov. 19, 2021, by an overwhelming 2-1 margin. The election was certified on Dec. 7 by the union’s Election Administrator.
The union is already preparing for negotiations and a member-driven contract campaign at United Parcel Service (UPS). The current, five-year agreement expires on July 31, 2023. The national contract covers more than 350,000 Teamsters at the company—the largest private collective bargaining agreement in the country.
An inauguration celebration open to all members will take place this summer at Teamsters headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The 2022-2027 General Executive Board members are as follows:
International Vice Presidents At-Large: Juan Campos, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 705, Chicago, Ill.; Joan Corey, Business Agent, Local 25, Boston, Mass.; Greg Floyd, President, Local 237, New York, N.Y.; Chris Griswold, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 986, Los Angeles, Calif.; Tony Jones, President, Local 413, Columbus, Ohio; John Palmer, Local 657, San Antonio, Texas; James Wright, President, Local 822, Norfolk, Va.
Western Region Vice Presidents: Mark Davison, President, Local 162, Portland, Ore.; Lindsay Dougherty, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 399, Hollywood, Calif.; Peter Finn, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 856, San Bruno, Calif.; Rick Hicks, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 174, Tukwila, Wash.
Central Region Vice Presidents: Danny Avelyn, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 554, Omaha, Neb.; Tom Erickson, President, Local 120, Minneapolis, Minn.; Avral Thompson, President, Local 89, Louisville, Ky.
Eastern Region Vice Presidents: Rocco Calo, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 1150, Stratford, Conn.; Bill Hamilton, President, Local 107, Philadelphia, Pa.; Matt Taibi, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 251, Providence, R.I.
Southern Region Vice Presidents: Thor Johnson, Vice President, Local 79, Tampa, Fla.; Brent Taylor, Secretary-Treasurer, Local 745, Dallas, Texas.
International Trustees: Willie Ford, President, Local 71, Charlotte, N.C.; Dan Kane Jr., President, Local 202, New York, N.Y.; Vinnie Perrone, President, Local 804, New York, N.Y.
International Vice Presidents Canada Region: François Laporte, President, Teamsters Canada, Laval, Quebec; Stan Hennessy, President, Local 31, Delta, British Columbia; Craig McInnes, President, Local 938, Mississauga, Ontario. Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.3 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/teamsters.
Photo Courtesy of Joe Hermitt/PennLive- PA Governor Tom Wolf (center), U.S. Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, and Local 776 President Ed Thompson cut the ribbon signaling the opening of the Yellow Corp. Driving Academy.
YELLOW CORP. OPENS DRIVING ACADEMY
Yellow Corporation is opening its 17th Commercial Driver’s License Driving Academy next week in Middlesex Township. Yellow Corporation subsidiaries include national carrier YRC Freight, and regional carrier New Penn. This is Yellow Corp.’s first training school in Pennsylvania. The Yellow CDL Driving Academy will offer apprentice drivers four weeks of classroom instruction and behind-the-wheel training with an instructor. The academy is tuition-free and students are paid to earn while they learn. Yellow is collaborating with the U.S. Department of Labor as part of its apprenticeship program “You actually have a job while you’re going through the program,” Yellow Corp. CEO Darren Hawkins said.
United States Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, PA Gov. Tom Wolf, officials from Yellow Corp., and Local 776 President Ed Thompson were on hand Tuesday morning for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the new facility in front of two tractor-trailers: Local 776’s and one from the American Trucking Association.
Anyone interested in finding out more about the training program can contact the driving academy hotline at 833-475-8201 to apply and learn more about enrollment.
Photo Courtesy of Joe Hermitt/PennLive - United States Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh (Center) discusses the program with Local 776 President Ed Thompson as Yellow Corp. CEO Darren Hawkins and PA Governor Tom Wolf look on.
Recent winter weather took a toll on the U.S. At one point, approximately 75% of the country was snow covered. Extreme cold covered Texas and the south. Texas remained in the frigid grip of winter storms as an arctic blast deepened an electricity supply crisis that has forced millions to endure days without power and heat. Pipes froze and burst across the state, and icicles hung from kitchen faucets in Houston, as Texas utilities struggled to restore power to millions of residents affected by the brutal winter weather, officials were scrambling to provide clean water as well. Cities and counties across the state, including Houston, San Antonio and Austin, had issued boil water notices stemming from concerns about contamination and low water pressure as frigid temperatures froze pipes, leaving some households with little to no running water. The boil water notices compounded the frustrations of some residents who stated that they do not have the power or electricity to boil water or are without water completely.
During the height of the crisis in Texas Local 776 received a call from the IBT. The International had a truckload of bottled water marked for delivery to the Dallas/Fort Worth area and needed someone to deliver it. Without hesitation, President Ed Thompson offered the Local’s truck and drivers to make the delivery. Two Local 776 members, both road drivers and Union Stewards from ABF Freight, Chalmer Edgin and Garry Teter Jr., jumped at the chance to deliver the much-needed water and were soon on the way, dropping the water off at the headquarters of Local 178 Operating Engineers Dallas/Ft. Worth. Once again, the Local’s motto “People Helping People” is put to the test and we delivered.
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IF YOU BOUGHT IT
A TRUCK BROUGHT IT
This incredible picture shows the poignant tribute hundreds of First World War soldiers paid to the horses who died fighting by their side. Approximately eight million war horses were killed during the conflict. The Horse was the backbone of the Teamsters in the early days. That is why the Teamsters use two horse heads and a wagon wheel as its permanent logo.
PA Conference of Teamsters Headquarters in Harrisburg, PA gets facelift.
PA Conference of Teamsters official logo on building
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UNDERSTANDING "FAIR SHARE" AND HOW IT CAN AFFECT MILLIONS OF PUBLIC SECTOR WORKERS
Pennsylvania House rejects bill targeting unions' political activity
An article appearing in The Morning Call (c) online news expained in the article that no veto was needed after enough moderate Republicans sided with Democrats to defeat the measure. The bill was favored by the GOP’s vast conservative majority and by two influential lobbying groups, the Commonwealth Foundation, which advocates against unions and for businesses; and the Commonwealth Partners Chamber of Entrepreneurs, which raises campaign money for conservative pro-business candidates.
The article further statedthat, after the vote, two GOP supporters moved for a new vote before the legislative session expires next November. To view and read entite article click here THE MORNING CALL
The PA Conference Supports Our Troops
Extremely rare cover from 1903, the year the IBT incepted. Team Drivers Local 416 out of Philadelphia, PA. Go to the Nostalgia Page to view more early Teamster items.
(HARRISBURG, Pa.) – More than a thousand Teamsters from across Pennsylvania rallied on the steps of the state capitol today to protest legislation designed to weaken worker protections and undercut their ability to bargain for improvements on the job.
Currently, there are a number of bills introduced in the general assembly that are a direct attack on working families in Pennsylvania. These bills are attempting to make harmful policies like right-to-work and paycheck deception law in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Gov. Tom Wolf spoke out against the legislation at the rally, denouncing the attack on working Pennsylvanians.
“There is a concerted effort by many at the national and state level to damage working men and women's ability to fight for wages they deserve, benefits they have earned, and protections that are fair,” Gov. Wolf said. “The constant threat of legislation like right to work, like paycheck protection, is an assault on the market and the economy. Any legislation that makes it harder for employees to organize in turn makes it harder for businesses to provide quality products and services to their customers.”
Opposition to these bills crosses party lines as representatives from both sides of the aisle have joined the fight to defeat the legislation. Republican State Rep. John Taylor spoke at the rally, expressing his opposition to the right-to-work and paycheck deception bills.
“I believe the sanctity of the bargaining agreement should stay intact,” Taylor said. “Right to work is something I’ve fought against since I was a college student and a Teamster. Right to work is not an issue worth pursuing. People will be hurt by this legislation.”
Rank-and-file Teamsters visited their elected officials before and after the rally to call on their representatives to vote against these bills. Pennsylvania Conference of Teamster President William Hamilton stressed the importance grassroots activism and the role it will play in defeating these bills.
“We can’t stand by and hope that our representatives to the right thing and vote down these bills,” Hamilton said. “We must keep the pressure on them and let them know that their constituents will not stand for this attack on Pennsylvania’s working families.”
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and “like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/teamsters.
William Hamilton, International Brotherhood of Teamsters Eastern Region Vice President and President of the Pennsylvania Conference of Teamsters joins Rick to raise awareness to the big money special interests setting up shop in Pennsylvania to push their No Rights at Work agenda and to explain why working people need to fight back against the euphemistically labeled poison.
Editorial from the Patriot News in Harrisburg, PA
THE PATRIOT NEWS HIT THE NAIL RIGHT ON THE HEAD!
"We all know why Republicans want "paycheck protection" and have couched the issue in Orwellian terms: Unions tend to strongly support their opponents.
But this is not needed legislation.
And as many taxpaying voters in the commonwealth have asked this week, don't legislators have more important things to do right now - such as property tax reform, pension reform and getting the state budget under control?" as quoted in the editorial.
It doesn’t matter if you are a registered Democrat, Republican or Independent. What matters is that you vote and only vote for those representatives that stand with you and issues that are important to you. If your elected officals voted or votes in favor of “Right-to-Work” legislation they are obviously not with you. It is time to send a a strong message to our elected officials that those choosing to vote against their hard working constituents will no longer have your support. Please ask your family and friends to support you by also voting against them.
The Huffington Post ®
Republicans Want To Pass A National Right-To-Work Law
Such a law would devastate unions, and it’s closer than ever to becoming a reality.
There are many serious problems pending in the Commonwealth that need to be addressed instead of wasting valuable time and resources on Right-to-Work legislation that will reduce wages.
Some members of the Pennsylvania House and Senate believe it is more important to pass right-to-work legislation than take care of the most critical problems facing the state, which they were elected to do.
School funding, infrastructure and good-paying jobs need their attention, not a measure that would devastate the middle class.
It is quite obvious these members have been bought out by billionaires and organizations who are more interested in lining the pockets of Wall Street and big business than helping the hard-working men and women in Pennsylvania maintain good paying jobs.
Right-to-work could more aptly be called "right-to-poverty.
Right-to-work is wrong.
It could more aptly be called "right-to-poverty."
Many of our fathers, grandfathers, relatives and ancestors fought and died helping workers achieve better wages, working conditions and safety in the work place by forming unions.
Unions have always helped strike a balance between the employee and the employer.
Our lawmakers promised to create good paying jobs in this state yet some are entertaining legislation that will force many of us into lower paying jobs by instituting such laws.
By lowering wages, elected officials would hurt the tax base and drive many more constituents into a life of low wages and welfare benefits to feed their families and make ends meet.
This will only add more stress on a system that is already overburdened. Even The Wall Street Journal recently published an article stating that wages in Right-to-Work states are much lower.
The cleverly worded title to the Folmer bill is "The Freedom of Employment Act." But it is nothing more than a bill designed to destroy unions and good-paying jobs and has nothing to do whatsoever with freedom in the workplace.
Lawmakers and the public shouldn't be fooled.
William Hamilton is the president of the Pennsylvania Conference of Teamsters.
Photos courtesy of the Rick Smith Show; B. Banditell
Below is a picture of the 1992 PA Conference of Teamsters “Conference Report” showing a building located at 814 North 2nd Street in Harrisburg, PA that will become the official headquarters for the PA Conference of Teamsters. Also shown below are the actual designs used to construct the PA Conference of Teamsters Crest that, still today, adorns the headquarters. To view more unique, rare and historic Teamster item go to our Nostalgia page 1 and Nostalgia page 2.
Under new requirements for 2005, CDL HAZMAT drivers will be required to successfully complete a Federal criminal history background check, have their fingerprints taken and pay additional Federal fees.
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