Stand with Me: Put an End to Lawbreaking at LA and Long Beach Ports

Humberto Canales

Port Truck Driver for XPO Logistics

There is a place in America where workers have no right to a minimum wage, no right to worker’s comp or disability insurance when they are injured and no right to form a union to improve their dismal conditions. Where is this place? It is where I work as a truck driver– at our nation’s seaports and rail yards, where companies have for decades been getting away with breaking labor laws, leaving many of us earning less than even the current minimum wage.

I am a port and rail yard truck driver. At ports across America, my coworkers and I haul everything we rely on – from the shoes on our kids’ feet, to the smart phones we depend on, to the parts for the cars and trucks we drive – from our nation’s marine terminals to rail yards, warehouses and distribution centers. This is where our economy starts.

Yet in a scheme to avoid paying taxes and taking responsibility for expensive trucks, our employers illegally misclassify us as “independent contractors.” We are victims of an illegal business scheme that allows companies like mine to deduct their business expenses from our paychecks at their convenience. My company charges me thousands of dollars a month to drive their truck, maintain and insure their truck, and even to park their truck on their property. This is wage theft and it is a crime.

The epicenter of wage theft is at our nation’s largest port complex – the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. If we can end misclassification and wage theft there, then America’s smaller ports, rail yards and countless other industries will be forced to follow suit.

Please sign our petition to stop wage theft at America’s ports and rail yards today. It is simply un-American to be forced to work below the minimum wage – and have no rights to solve our problems.