Wirtz Beverage Drivers Ratify Strong Teamster Contract

Local 710 Secures Wage Increases for Chicago Liquor Distributors

wirtz_logoApproximately 120 distribution drivers represented by Teamsters Local 710 overwhelmingly ratified a new four-year contract last month with Wirtz Beverage Group.

The premium liquor, beer and wine drivers voted to approve the agreement by a 5-to-1 margin, securing wage increases of 50 cents per hour each year of the contract. The Wirtz Corporation, which owns the Chicago Blackhawks, is one of North America’s largest beverage distribution companies. Its Chicago drivers, who work out of sprawling distribution centers in Cicero and Rockford, voted to join Local 710 in 2008.

“Wirtz is a defining Chicago company and Teamster drivers are the city’s premier labor workforce, which makes this powerful contract a winning partnership for everyone,” said John T. Coli, Trustee of Local 710. “With annual wage increases and improvements to their benefits, Local 710 members employed by Wirtz will continue to be leaders in Chicago’s strong and historic distribution industry. The Teamsters Union applauds our members for sticking together at the bargaining table and on the job.”

In addition to forthcoming raises, the drivers’ wage increases are retroactive for all of 2014. The new contract also includes improvements to member benefits in the Local 710 Health and Welfare Fund.

Retirement benefits for all drivers will be boosted over the length of the agreement as well. Wirtz workers participating in the pension funds for beverage drivers administered by Teamsters Local 703 and Teamsters Local 705 will receive benefit increases each year for the next four years. Local 703 Pension Fund participants also will receive increases to employer-provided 401(K) contributions during the final three years of the contract.

Teamsters Local 710 is an affiliate of Teamsters Joint Council 25, America’s premier labor union for Chicago, Illinois and northwest Indiana.

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