UPDATE from Teamsters Local 763 — The Union representing EMTs and Paramedics at American Medical Response has reached a tentative agreement on a new contract with the employer. Teamsters Local 763 had suspended a strike deadline scheduled for noon Friday, Dec. 21 to alllow negotiations to continue.
“After coming to the brink of a strike with an enormous impact on ambulance service for so many communities, we are gratified that our bargaining team and AMR were able to freach a tentative agreement today,” said Liz Brown, Teamsters Local 763 Business Agent. “This means the holiday season will not be marred by an interruption of critical health services.” Read more.
The following is from Teamsters Local 763:
SEATTLE (Dec. 17, 2018) — The union representing emergency medical technicians and paramedics at American Medical Response (AMR) has issued a strike deadline for noon on Friday, Dec. 21.
Teamsters Local 763 issued a strike notice to AMR after the company refused to return to the bargaining table. The EMTs and paramedics rejected a contract offer and authorized a strike by a vote of 310-46 on Nov. 30.
“If there is a strike, it’s because AMR is the Grinch who stole Christmas,” said Liz Brown, a business agent with Local 763. “Our members want to continue to provide patient care to all the communities AMR serves. The best outcome for all is for AMR and our members to resolve this dispute through negotiation.”
Teamsters Local 763 represents about 450 EMTs and paramedics at AMR’s Seattle operation. AMR provides ambulance transport service to the city of Seattle Fire Department and other fire agencies in the region. AMR also provides transport services to other health care facilities, including hospitals such as Swedish.
AMR and Teamsters 763 have been in bargaining since January 2018.
Brown said the main issues in dispute are a livable wage and affordable health care. The starting wage for employees at AMR is $15.54 per hour, just above Seattle’s minimum wage. The corporation’s contract offer would force the employees to pay much more for their health insurance.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter and “like” us on Facebook.