United Parcel Service, Teamsters union to resume labor talks on Tuesday

July 22 (Reuters) – United Parcel Service (UPS.N) said it plans on Tuesday to resume labor talks with the Teamsters union representing 340,000 employees, an effort to avert a strike that could roil supply chains and harm the economy.

The two sides in April began talks on a contract covering the company’s U.S. drivers, package handlers and loaders. An existing five-year labor pact expires on July 31.

“With the contract expiration less than two weeks away, we need to work quickly to finalize a fair deal that provides certainty for our customers, our employees and businesses across the country, Atlanta-based UPS said on Saturday.

A spokesperson for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters confirmed the Tuesday talks and pointed to a statement detailing its goals for a five-year agreement that increases pay and full-time jobs, and strengthens protections for workers.

UPS said it hope to “resolve the few remaining open issues” at the talks. The company started negotiations “prepared to increase the already industry-leading pay and benefits we provide our full and part-time union employees and are committed to reaching an agreement that will do just that.”

The two sides have reached tentative agreements on eliminating a two-tier pay structure for delivery drivers and putting air conditioning on package cars. However, they remain at odds over pay increases for part-time workers who sort packages and load trucks.

Talks broke down on July 5 with each side blaming the other.

Reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; writing by Gary McWilliams; editing by Diane Craft

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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