Teamsters Local #507 Plans Strike Against American Red Cross

February 3, 2012

Teamsters Local #507 Plans Strike Against American Red Cross

Cleveland, OH, February 1, 2012 – The American Red Cross Northern Ohio Blood Services Region today received a 10-day Notice of Intent to Strike by Teamsters Local #507 union representatives. According to the notice, 250 members of the union may begin a work stoppage at 3:00 am on February 14 if a new contract cannot be reached.  This union represents Northern Ohio Region employees who perform blood collection operations.

At a time when blood supplies are low and the Region has its largest annual blood drive scheduled, the Red Cross believes it is irresponsible for the union to give notice of its intent to strike. This blood drive averages 900 units each year, and a labor disruption could impact the patients who rely on these blood donations.

Health benefits have been the biggest issue in negotiations with the union. The Red Cross has put forward contract proposals consistent with the pay and benefits packages provided locally to non-union staff, which were declined. The Red Cross has made fair and competitive proposals which it had hoped would be ratified by union members. The fact that 16 other contracts have been ratified since July 2011 shows the Red Cross’s commitment to reaching successful resolution to negotiations.

The Northern Ohio Blood Services Region must collect approximately 900 units of blood daily to meet the needs of patients in 57 local hospitals. The Region absolutely depends on dedicated, volunteer blood donors to meet this need. If a work stoppage occurs, the Red Cross will work to bring in blood from other Red Cross locations to aid in the transfusion care of patients in our area. It is important to note that a strike would not affect services provided by local Red Cross chapters.

We are strongly encouraging all eligible blood and platelet donors to make or keep their appointment to give in the next few weeks.  For more information, or to schedule a blood donation appointment, please call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit us online at

Media Contact: 
Christy Sabaka, Regional Communications Program Manager
216-308-8348 (cell)                                                                                         
216-361-7523 (office)

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at