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School Bus Teamsters Celebrate Ten Years of Driving Up Standards

Since 2006, Drive Up Standards has brought better pay and a union to thousands of school bus drivers across the country

Teamsters in New York and across the country are celebrating 10 years of the Drive Up Standards campaign, which has brought a union and fair pay to thousands of school bus workers across the country.

In New York, Teamster school bus workers celebrated at New Dawn Transit, Jofaz Transportation, Y&M Transit, and Consolidated Bus Company. School bus workers are represented by Teamsters Local 553 in New York City, by Local 1205 in Long Island, by Local 456 in Westchester, and by Local 445 in the Hudson Valley.

“Teamsters Local 553 is proud to represent school bus workers in New York City,” said Local 553 Secretary-Treasurer Demos Demopoulos. “These workers care for our children on their way to and from school and they deserve respect. That is what they get with a strong union and strong union contract.”

In Baltimore, Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa rallied with First Student drivers and monitors who transport students for Baltimore City Public Schools.

Since launching the Drive Up Standards campaign in 2006, the union-wide effort to raise industry standards has become a model for its success in organizing workers on a monumental scale.

“When this campaign began in 2006, we had just 4,000 members in the bus industry. Today, we represent 46,000 bus workers at over 400 bus yards. First Student is now the third largest Teamster employer. The Teamsters are leading the way, and we have a bright future ahead of us,” Hoffa said.

“When we are united, there is nothing we cannot accomplish. Let’s continue to drive up standards by fighting for safer vehicles, higher wages, and better benefits and protections for all Teamster bus members,” said Kevin Shelton, a driver at First Student.

The Teamsters’ Drive Up Standards campaign is a global campaign to improve safety, service and work standards in the privatized school bus and transit industry. Since the campaign began in 2006, 46,000 drivers, monitors, aides, attendants and mechanics have become Teamsters. For more information on the Drive Up Standards campaign, go to