After months of extensions and a strike threat, ABF Freight and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters have ratified the five-year labor agreement first agreed upon in June.
The ABF National Master Freight Agreement, which the carrier said will result in $55 million to $65 million in annual savings, will take effect Nov. 3.
The deal, which had been agreed upon by the majority of workers this summer, was being held up by the Central Region Local Cartage supplement, one of the deal’s 27 supplements covering regional workers. Central Region employees had been weighing strike action earlier in October, but voted on Oct. 29 against striking and instead decided to ratify the supplement. Another regional holdout, Western Office Part 5, ratified its supplement Oct. 14.
“The implementation of our national five-year agreement is a significant step for our company and we are very pleased to move forward,” ABF Chief Executive Officer Roy Slagle said in a statement. “However, this is just one of several initiatives that we are focused on as we continuously look for ways to improve the efficiency of national operations on behalf of our customers.”
The agreement includes an immediate 7-percent wage reduction, a decrease in the amount of vacation time and various other concessions. The wage reduction will be earned back in 2-percent annual increments over the life of the contract, and employees will see a 2.5-percent pay hike during the last year of the agreement.