Teamsters’ management policies and politics that influence the union today

Over the last ten years American business has downsized, limited annual wage increases for its workers, and decreased workers’ health and welfare benefits, while the salaries of its management including their bonuses have continually increased. As a result, strikes by workers for their rights to jobs and benefits are on the rise with sympathy coming from the American public, many of whom are in the same position but without the support of a union. To compete successfully in today's global marketplace an organization needs to have the support of a motivated, productive, and well-paid workforce. To accomplish this, labor needs a strong union that can provide such a workforce by negotiating return of respect for its members by employers. The management ofthe International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the largest private union in the United States, can do this because they did it before. Their management’s policies and politics brought about employers’ approval and respect of its members during thefirst half of the 20th century. This historical study shows how these policies and politics contributed to the organization that is present today and the opportunity it has to prove that unions are the cornerstones of a democratic society.