Stericycle Workers in New York Join Teamsters Union
NYC Medical Waste Drivers Vote for Representation with Teamsters Local 813
Stericycle drivers in New York City have voted to join Teamsters Local 813. The 22-worker waste unit is seeking a strong voice to address years of workplace concerns.
“As Teamsters, we will never be afraid to speak out again. We will end the unfairness and speak truth to management without any fear of threats or intimidation. This was a tough fight, but we overcame the anti-union campaign from management to form our union with the Teamsters,” said Carlos Torres, a seven-year Stericycle driver.
According to Kevin Sanders, a Stericycle route driver, the need for union representation became even more crucial since March 2020, when the medical waste workers found themselves on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We knew the time had come to form a union. The pandemic made the need for representation all the clearer. We were handling biohazard waste daily before the pandemic began, and we knew that if we had union representation, we would have been protected from the start,” Sanders said. “We are thrilled to have formed our union with Local 813. Now, we can finally address years of concerns under a strong Teamster contract. It’s time for this company to treat its workers right.”
In addition to safety concerns, Torres and Sanders both said workers were seeking better wages, fairer work rules and improvements to health care.
“This strong group deserves dignity and respect on the job. As medical waste workers, they have been on the front lines for more than a year and a half and led the fight against COVID-19. We congratulate them on their organizing victory and proudly stand with them to win a strong contract to address years of concerns at Stericycle,” said Daniel Wright, President of Local 813.
The Teamsters Solid Waste and Recycling Division has launched a union-wide campaign to organize Stericycle workers throughout the U.S. and Canada.
“Stericycle workers have a very important job to protect the public’s health, and they deserve a strong voice on the job,” said Chuck Stiles, Director of the Teamsters Solid Waste and Recycling Division. “I applaud this determined group for standing together, and I want to remind every Stericycle worker that the Teamsters Waste Division is committed to organizing and building our union strength at this company. Our momentum will only continue to grow.”
The organizing victory in New York City marks the fourth unit at Stericycle and its subsidiary, Shred-it, Inc., to join the Teamsters Union in less than a year. Since October 2020, the Teamsters Union has organized workers in New Jersey, Rhode Island and New York.
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.