Last Week in Southern Labor: 3/1 - 3/8
Updated On: Apr 01, 2024

By JACOB MORRISON March 14, 2024

Here’s what workers in the US South and the colonies were up to from March 1st to March 8th:


  • A couple weeks back workers at 21 Starbucks stores across the country demonstrated majority support for unionization with Starbucks Workers United, and I think we’re starting to see those petitions come through, because there were several Starbucks petitions this week, including in:

    • Sulphur, LA with 21 workers

    • Denton, TX with 29 workers

    • Little Rock, AR with 15 workers

    • Christiansburg, VA with 17 workers

  • Workers likely pushed by their employer filed a petition to decertify the Teamsters Local 327 as the union representing the 10 workers at Westrock Service in Nashville, TN 

  • 6 workers at Arkhola (a gravel supply company) in Harrison, AR filed a petition to hold a union election with the Teamsters Local 373, as well as at another location with 9 workers in the same city

  • 82 workers at United Natural Foods in Sarasota, FL filed a petition to hold a union election with the Teamsters Local 79

  • Workers likely pushed by their employer filed a petition to decertify the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) District 1199 as the union representing 35 workers at the Charleston Healthcare Center in Charleston, WV

  • 5 workers at Herzog Transit Service in Irving, TX filed a petition to hold a union election with the American Train Dispatchers Association

  • 42 workers at Bull Moose Tube in Sinton, TX filed a petition to hold a union election with the United Steel Workers (USW)

  • The employer filed a petition to hold a union election after a majority of the 20 workers at Houston Landing in Houston, TX demonstrated support for unionization with the NewsGuild’s Media Guild of the West, but this petition was later withdrawn because the company decided to voluntarily recognize the union

  • 9 guards at Kerberos / Maxsent in Arlington, VA filed a petition to hold a union election with the Security, Police, and Fire Professionals of America (SPFPA)

  • 20 workers at Luke and Associates in Beaufort, SC filed a petition to hold a union election with the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 465 

  • Workers at a Toyota engine plant in Troy, Missouri announced they hit 30% support for unionization with the UAW citing safety issues in particular. This is the first Toyota plant to hit this milestone

  • The council of bosses in Alabama wasn’t kidding when they said they would be putting on an all out propaganda war. This week alone, there were two more statewide op eds lambasting Alabamians for wanting to organize

  • Workers organizing with the Amazon Labor Union at an Amazon air hub in Kentucky are hosting DHL Teamsters from across the street who will be talking to Amazon workers about how they recently unionized, struck, and won big

  • Graduate workers at Vanderbilt in Tennessee announced they hit 50% support among their bargaining unit for unionization with Vanderbilt Graduate Workers United, a UAW affiliate. Being a private university, they can unionize under the typical proces
  • There were 5 election petition withdrawals this week:

    • 60 workers at Red River Science & Technology in Ft Knox, KY with the Transport Workers Union (TWU)

    • 17 workers at Parker Transport in Clinton, TN with the Teamsters Local 519

    • 13 workers at Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center in New Orleans, LA 

    • 95 workers at TENSAR Corporation in Morrow, GA with the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union (RWDSU)

    • And a decertification petition with 7 workers at The Daily Progress in Charlottesville, VA with the Washington-Baltimore NewsGuild CWA Local 32035

  • 4 workers at Barbizon Capital in Alexandria, VA voted 4 to 0 in favor of unionization with the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees (IATSE) Local 22

  • 7 workers at Leidos in Merritt Island, FL voted 7 to 0 in favor of unionization with IATSE Local 780

  • 9 workers at Victory Toyota in Triadelphia, WV voted 9 to 0 in favor of unionization with the Teamsters Local 697

  • 27 workers at Southeastern Paper Group in College Park, GA voted against unionization with the Teamsters Local 528

  • 51 workers at IKEA in Carolina, PR voted 26 to 6 in favor of unionization with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW)

  • 9 workers at Spartannash Associates in Norfolk, VA voted 4 to 5 against unionization with the Teamsters Local 822

  • 12 workers at All Point Logistics in North Merritt Island, FL voted 7 to 4 in favor of unionization with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW)

Nearly 2,000 workers of Loudon County, VA voted in favor of unionization with SEIU Local 512


  • Workers at Longleaf Neuro-Medical Treatment Center in Wilson, NC, and members of UE Local 150 were “overpaid” in amounts ranging from $26 to nearly $3,000 and had the “overpayment” deducted from their paycheck without notice. Workers say they thought the extra money was a bonus and are demanding they be allowed to repay in installments rather than all at once

  • The State of Texas took over the Houston Independent School District this year, cutting library budgets, and implemented rigid “school reform” curriculum. The changes have prompted a wave of resignations from teachers and protests from the Houston Education Association


  • Waffle House workers in Atlanta, GA delivered a letter to management demanding improved health and safety, $25/hr, and fair scheduling

  • ATU Local 689 members ended their strike against Connectur in Virginia after reaching a tentative agreement that the union says includes competitive pay, enhanced 40 hour guarantees, and more. Members later voted to ratify the contract

  • Nurses, and members of National Nurses United (NNU) at the HCA hospitals Osceola and Lake Monroe in Florida held a rally ahead of contract negotiations with the largest hospital network in the state, noting that the company made $5.2B in profits last year, as are nurses with the same union in Kansas City

  • Teamsters ratified the tentative agreement with Anheuser-Busch

  • UAW members at Daimler Trucks voted to authorize a strike by 96%

  • Teamsters Local 688 at Graybar in St Louis, MO are still on strike 

  • The Communication Workers of America (CWA) members ratified their Tentative Agreement with AT&T Mobility.

  • The UFCW Local 400 bargaining committee, representing 3,000 Kroger workers in West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky, reached a tentative agreement with the company after members rejected the first contract offer and authorized a strike. Ratification vote will take place soon, the bargaining committee recommends ratification

  • South Florida janitors with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 32BJ voted unanimously to ratify their new tentative agreement that won higher wages and more time off.


  • Kansas City is considering subsidies for a new sports stadium, and labor and community groups are demanding a community benefits agreement. Last week, the High Road Strategy Center released a report on Milwaukee’s recent stadium construction that came with a community benefits agreement, detailing the positive results, and advocating for similar measure in Kansas City. 

  • President Biden signed an executive order expanding apprenticeships in the federal government and promoting labor management forums at federal agencies. The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is supportive of the order

  • Bipartisan legislation has been introduced in the US Senate to keep rail worker unemployment benefits for rail workers. While the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Account is employer funded based on time worked, this account is subject to Congressional sequestration, which means that a percentage of these earned benefits is sent back to the federal government. The Railroad Employee Equity and Fairness (REEF) Act, introduced by Deb Fischer, Sherrod Brown, and Amy Klobuchar would stop this. The legislation is supported by the Teamsters

  • Senator Josh Hawley introduced the Protecting American Autoworkers from China Act which would raise tariffs on Chinese automobiles, the Teamsters are supportive of the legislation

  • A bill in the Alabama State House was introduced that would add a $10.64 tax to every prescription filled in the state, at the same time other states are capping prescription drug prices

  • Florida’s legislative session is over, and we’ll have McKenna Schueler on next week to debrief, but in short, it’s bad

  • The U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division’s New Orleans district office has signed a collaborative agreement with the Southeast Louisiana Building and Construction Trades Council to protect workers and promote compliance with federal labor laws

  • Democrats in Virginia are pushing for a law to legalize collective bargaining for state employees, and the United Campus Workers CWA Local in the state is supporting the move

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