Sanitation Workers in Orange County, CA Ratify New Contract With Republic Services

A contract has been ratified between Republic Services at Anaheim and Huntington Beach and Teamsters Local 396, which represents more than 400 sanitation workers at Republic Services who participated in an eight-day strike in response to the company’s unfair labor practices.

Instead of providing these workers with fair pay and a fair contract that addresses their concerns, including excessive working hours and constant harassment on the job, Republic Services responded to the employees’ union activities with unfair labor practices, leaving them with no choice but to strike.

***Details on ULP Strike are below and linked here **

***Strike photos and videos are linked here***

After several bargaining sessions with Republic Services, Teamsters Local 396 members at Republic Services Anaheim and Huntington Beach have now ratified, by an overwhelming majority, an agreement with the company that includes a fair contract for workers at Anaheim and Huntington Beach. Republic Services has also agreed to cease engaging in unfair labor practices. This ratification has ended the strike with regular waste collection resuming throughout Orange County.

“By standing together, sanitation workers at Republic Services in Orange County have won respect on the job and a commitment from the company to cease engaging in unfair labor practices,” said Omar Ortiz, a Republic Services Huntington Beach driver. “I am happy that we are finally being recognized for essential work that ensured that communities were safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“We are happy to have reached an agreement with the company that secures a fair contract for the workers,” said Michael Dominguez, a mechanic at Republic Services Anaheim. “We are incredibly thankful for the immense support we received from the community and elected officials during the strike. We are happy that we will now return to work, helping our customers and keeping cities throughout Orange County clean.”

Ron Herrera, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 396, stated, “This tremendous victory would not have been possible without the courage and dedication demonstrated by the brave members of Teamsters Local 396 at Republic Services Anaheim and Huntington Beach on the picket line. I thank all of the Unions, communities members, elected officials, and faith leaders for their solidarity in supporting these workers while they were on strike. Most of these workers are immigrants of color who sacrificed themselves during the COVID-19 pandemic to keep our communities safe. While many people got to work from home, these workers were on the frontlines working long hours to protect Orange County residents. This agreement will ensure that our members are treated with respect and that they can provide a better future for their families. This group of workers have truly demonstrated what it means to be an essential worker and can now walk with their heads held high, knowing that their hard work is being recognized by the company they work for and the communities they serve.”