An additional 20 drivers employed by Kennebec Valley Community Action Partners (KVCAP) in Waterville, ME voted to join the Machinists Union. The group follows the 17 drivers in Augusta, ME who joined IAM and ratified their first contract earlier this year. The new members will in IAM Local S-89 will fall under the same contract with KVCAP.
“Our decision to form a union was driven by the company’s refusal to respect the experience of longtime drivers when determining wages, employee favoritism and a disciplinary system that offered workers no due process,” said Waterville KVCAP driver Mark Goggin.
KVCAP drivers provide transportation services to low-income Maine residents for medical appointments, drug treatment, work and other needs.
“Congratulations to our newest members of IAM Local S-89,” said IAM Eastern Territory General Vice President Jimmy Conigliaro Sr. “I applaud every one of them for recognizing the benefits of having union representation, a union contract and having a voice in the workplace. Welcome to the IAM.”
“I’m excited to welcome this new group of drivers to the IAM family,” said District 4 Directing Business Representative Rick Compher. “I’m proud of them for stepping up and wanting a voice on the job, and proud of the District 4 staff for bringing them that opportunity. They will see the benefits of being union from day one.”
“The drivers have been woefully underpaid and undervalued,” said IAM District Lodge 4 Business Representative George Edwards. “By forming a union and standing up for their rights, they can use their collective voice to not only improve their wages and working conditions, but also to help ensure safer, a more reliable service for their riders. We hope this sends a message to other working people that they too can have power in their workplaces.”
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