The action targets XPO Logistics Inc. and NFI Industries and marks the 16th strike mounted by the Teamsters union in recent years among nonunion workers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, according to the labor group. Rather than focus on slowing work at the ports, the strikers plan to concentrate picketing and leafleting Monday and Tuesday on warehouses, headquarters and retail outlets of clients of XPO and NFI, as well as demonstrating at the port itself.
The strike is the latest effort by labor groups to focus on workers who companies don’t consider direct employees, or who get their paychecks from other firms in the supply chain. It also exemplifies how strikes in the U.S. have shifted toward drawing public scrutiny to corporate behavior and workers’ demands — such as the union-backed “Fight for $15” — rather than directly disrupting their bottom line.
Port officials have said that previous Teamster port strikes led to some shipments being turned away but had a limited impact on port operations. The union hopes that its mobilizations next week will heighten public pressure on the logistics firms and on their prominent clients, which the Teamsters said include Amazon.com Inc., Toyota Motor Corp., Puma and Rio Tinto Plc.
‘We Work for Them’
“At the end of the day, we work for them too — we carry their cargo, so we want them to support us,” said XPO Logistics driver Cesar Rodriguez.
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