Overnite, Teamsters Back in Court Today
July 17, 2000
Overnite Transportation, Richmond, Va., is back on court today, defending itself against National Labor Relations Board charges that it targeted and terminated Teamsters supporters at its terminal in Memphis, Tenn.
The hearing, which began June 19 in a Memphis courtroom, reconvenes this morning in the NLRB's regional office. The labor board, on behalf of Teamsters Local 667, rested its case against Overnite June 28, according to The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal Overnite's defense team began laying the groundwork of its case last week.
According to the paper, last week's testimony centered on three events. The first was an orientation of visiting employees or possible replacement workers at the Memphis terminal in April 1999. One of the visiting workers, Robert Yarborough, said he was threatened by another employee. The threatening employee, Sam Powell, a staunch union supporter, was terminated. Yarborough testified that Powell threatened to run over him with a forklift if he returned. Powell testified that he simply gave a safety warning.
In the second incident, two employees were allegedly fired for telling workers to slow down in June 1999. The last event questions whether Overnite used background checks to target and terminate union supporters.
So far Overnite lawyers have called seven witnesses, and say they plan to call at least 18 in total. The Memphis portion of the hearing is expected to conclude this week.