We are excited to announce that we’ve organized a new group of Members into Teamsters Local 399. Cook Helpers & Cook Helper-Drivers have ratified their Union Contract for Cook Helpers & Cook Helper-Drivers working in Television & Features that took effect this past Sunday, January 19th! A ratification meeting was held on Saturday, January 11th at Pickwick Gardens to review and vote on the proposed Agreement from the AMPTP.
As you may recall, in the 2018 Black Book negotiations, we made a proposal to cover these classifications under our Black Book Agreement. This is not the first time this proposal has been made, as this was a covered classification up until it was lost under the Earl Bush Administration. Though we were unsuccessful in covering these groups in our 2018 negotiations, we are proud to have been able to secure an agreement over the course of this past year.
We have been working behind-the-scenes with our Cook Helpers and Cook Helper-Drivers over the last couple of years to learn more about their working conditions and issues on the job. As many of you know, in order to provide quality and timely meals to Members on set, these two groups often work around the clock to prep, prepare, serve and clean-up for meals on set. Their lack of representation has let many daily issues go unresolved and unaddressed. Their hard-work and commitment to excellent service throughout the Industry demands that they too get the ability to fight on behalf of securing higher wages, good health and retirement benefits and improved working conditions.
This newly ratified contract secures not only Union representation, but also Motion Picture Health Benefits. We look forward to welcoming this new group as part of our Teamster Family! We will also be working to better understand the major issues that have plagued these hardworking individuals for years. We welcome the challenges that lies ahead to fight for higher wages, better working conditions and the respect and dignity both these classifications deserve on and off the job. Please join us in welcoming our newest Local 399 Brothers & Sisters. This group brings power and strength to our hardworking Union family and we are grateful to have Teamster Strong Cook Helpers & Cook Helper-Drivers in our Membership.