The Teamsters union and YRC Freight, the new name of the company formerly known as YRC Worldwide Inc., have canceled a March 1 meeting scheduled to discuss a company proposal to exit the short-haul business.
Tyson Johnson, head of the Teamsters' freight division, sent a communiquÃ© to union locals on Friday announcing the cancellation. The meeting was to be held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The letter did not address the reasons behind the cancellation or mention a revised meeting date.
YRC issued a statement through a spokeswoman that the cancellation involved nothing more than a change of meeting dates. "The company continues to work on the proposed changes" with the Teamsters, the statement said.
Earlier this month, YRC proposed to take its long-haul carriers out of the market for freight moving 500 miles or less in same-day or next-day service. The proposal would call for those shipments to be turned over to the company's three regional units: Holland, Reddaway, and New Penn. Because YRC National is a unionized carrier, the operational change would need to be approved by the Teamsters.
Ken Paff, national organizer for Teamster dissident group Teamsters for a Democratic Union, said the delay came after YRC management implemented part of the change without a "Change of Operations" plan already approved by the Teamsters.
Paff said the company began rerouting freight away from an area around Columbus, Ohio, where YRC workers are represented by Teamster Local 413. After the local complained to Teamster leadership, the March 1 meeting was canceled, according to Paff.
YRC recently changed its name to YRC Freight to reflect the exclusive focus on its core less-than-truckload (LTL) business. In mid-December, it jettisoned money-losing truckload unit YRC Glen Moore, saying it was a distraction to upper management's efforts to improve the LTL business.