Thursday, June 11, 2009

More News That Affects Me Personally is a web site created by FedEx. UPS is supporting legislation that would reclassify FedEx truck drivers as truck drivers instead of airline workers. Business Week has an article on it, which kind of slants towards the legislation, but pretty much gives the facts.
The dispute involves the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2009, which contains a provision that would change the labor law covering FedEx workers. Language introduced in the bill by U.S. Representative James Oberstar (D-Minn.) would subject FedEx workers to the same rules as those performing similar work for Atlanta-based UPS. The measure affects employees of FedEx Express, which along with FedEx Ground, FedEx Freight, and FedEx Office comprises FedEx, but not the status of FedEx Express workers who are air-based, such as pilots and airplane mechanics. The bill passed the House on May 21 and is now in the Senate, where a similar House measure failed in 2007.
Personally, I think that unions serve a purpose, and that the worker needs to look out for his/herself. If I was driving a truck, I'd want the option of joining a truck driver's union. That's just me, though, and it's all theory. I make computery thingies for a living, and I'm management. There's no drive to organize here, nor do I expect one. Tech-nerds are like housecats, we don't band together for the common good all that often.

I know that UPS is supporting this bill because it will cost FedEx money, but isn't that what rival companies do? This has nothing to do with the government handing taxpayer money over to UPS to cover their losses, UPS is still earning profits. Yes, lower profits than last year, but that's not running in the red by any stretch of the imagination.

Whether or not this bill passes is for our legislative representatives to decide. I can see that there are two sides to the story, and the issue merits discussion. Calling it a "bailout", though, that's just slinging mud. It feels to me like crossing a line.

No comments: