SAN ANTONIO -- At a time when the working people of this country and the world are under assault by forces which despise organized workers and democracy in general, the workers from Teamsters Local 657 in San Antonio know this feeling all too well. Since April 25th of last year, they have been on strike because the owners of Pioneer Brands, owned by CH Guenther, a multi-national food processing company, wants to force the union to make concessions that included reducing pension and healthcare benefits at a time when Pioneer Brands are generating profits for their shareholders. Pioneer has even contracted scabs (non-union employees for a much lower wage) to break the workers’ strike. In light of the modest demands the union is making of Guenther, these hostile actions can only be viewed for what they really are: Pioneer and other giant corporations are taking the opportunity to crush the world’s labor unions under their boot.
It’s been over 20 years now since the West thought they were ushering in “The End of History” as the Soviet experiment in socialism collapsed due to the forces of economic warfare and counterrevolution outside and within the USSR. As we can all can plainly see, the end of history has not arrived. Capitalism’s guiding, invisible hand seems to be pushing humanity off a ledge into an abyss instead of letting the wealth trickle down The world’s citizens, labor, and workers’ organizations are under unprecedented attacks around the globe. We are seeing it in every inhabited region of the world. It matters not what flag or nationality you claim, it’s likely that you are feeling austerity’s boot to the face.
The Teamsters have fighting for workers’ rights across the country in the last year, yet few in the media have covered numerous strikes the union's members are currently engaged in around the United States. The Teamsters is a varied union including warehouse workers, tank-haulers, solid waste workers, rail workers, public services, port workers, newspaper, magazine, and electronic media, industrial trades, freight workers, food processing, dairy, building materials and construction, bakery and laundry workers and numerous others.
Currently, hundreds of Teamsters members are on strike across the country; indeed, some of them have been on strike for more than a year (including Local 657), but very little coverage or actions of solidarity have supported the Teamsters' actions.