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6/30/2005

Teamster Member Wins 11 Months of Back Pay, Benefits

Source: Teamsters

On June 16, Local 710 member Tony Leonard won reinstatement and 11 months of back pay after an arbitrator ruled his employer, Sysco Corporation, had unjustly fired him.

“This is a huge morale booster because we’re constantly fighting these guys for a fair workplace,” said Mike Lloyd, a steward for the Chicaco-based Local 710.

Leonard is one of 155 Teamster delivery drivers at the Sysco food distribution center in Chicago. Sysco suspended him in July 2004 for driving with an invalid license.

Leonard had recently moved from Wisconsin to Illinois and had not received a notice from the Wisconsin DMV that as a post-9/11 policy, he must register as a HAZMAT driver. He took care of the problem within 24 hours, but Sysco refused to hire him back, even though other drivers had been promptly recalled after resolving similar issues.

Local 710 President Jim Dawes worked through a deadlocked grievance hearing and slow-moving arbitration to make sure Leonard’s rights were protected.

“The union did a great job, and a lot of the guys at Sysco supported me by calling up and asking what was going on with my case,” Leonard said. “It is all very much appreciated.”

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