Chartered in October 1967, and currently comprised of nearly 8,000 members, Local 988 has steadily become the second largest Teamsters union in Texas. We service members at 33 companies and over 60 worksites, and actively work with employees at other places of employment who reach out to us confidentiality, wanting to form a union at their job to secure better working conditions, wages, and benefits.
Local 988 is a part of Joint Council 58 – Southern Region, which incorporates 4 local unions and has a territory reaching from the Gulf Coast to San Antonio, and is affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. The Teamsters were founded in 1903 and currently represent more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico as the 4th most powerful labor union in the United States. To learn more about the Teamsters, go to teamster.org, follow them on Twitter, and like them on Facebook.
Local 988’s roots are from Teamsters Local 968. Full circle, Local 968 was merged into Local 988 in ______. Other Teamsters Locals, including 949, 920, and 1111 have now become a part of one of the largest Teamster Locals in Texas and the South.
In the late 1960s, Teamsters at Local 968 were divided between freight drivers and warehouse workers primarily working in the grocery industry at places like Weingartens, of Weingarten Rights fame (known throughout labor unions everywhere). The freight workers felt that they would be better served if they spun off into their own union, which they eventually ended up doing, becoming Local 988. However, both unions were housed in the same location along the Katy Freeway in Houston, Texas.
Over the years, as the Houston retail grocery industry changed, the legacy bargaining units represented by Local 968 underwent significant constriction. The result was a diminished membership at Local 968. After changes in the elected leadership brought further instability to Local 968, the local was reunited with the sisters and brothers at Local 988. The merger of Local 968 with Local 988 resulted in the second largest Teamster local in Texas.
Houston Teamsters can be proud of historic victories on behalf of the workers, including the Lighthouse for the Blind, where sheltered workshop employees won the right to have union representation, one of the first in the country. Important recent victories for workers at WCA, the first organized trash hauler in the Houston area and Southern Glazers are additional examples of the continuing vitality of Teamsters in the Houston area and Local 988 remains committed to improving the lives of workers along the greater Texas Gulf Coast region.
Local 988’s Territory
Local 988 covers an expansive territory and includes the third most populated county in the country, Harris County which is home to most of the city of Houston, the 4th largest city in the United States. Our territory ranges from the Louisiana border to north of Lufkin, north of College Station, west of Schulenburg, to south of Victoria.