House members demand probe into XPO's mistreatment of employees

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 12/5/2018

Shortly after The New York Times published a scathing report about mistreatment of employees at a XPO Logistics warehouse, some Congress members want some answers. Nearly 100 House representatives signed a letter asking the Committee on Education and the Workforce to launch an investigation into XPO’s practices, including the treatment of truckers.

On Tuesday, Dec. 4, Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., sent a letter to Chairwoman Virginia Foxx and Ranking Member Bobby Scott of the Committee on Education and the Workforce regarding allegations of mistreatment of employees by XPO. A total of 97 representatives signed the letter.

“We, the undersigned members of Congress, wish to raise concerns regarding a number of allegations and new reports exposing the alleged disturbing treatment of employees at facilities across the United States managed by a company named XPO Logistics, and we urge the Committee on Education and the Workforce to bring forth transparency for the public by looking into, investigating, and calling for, if deemed necessary, relevant stakeholders to testify before the Committee,” the letter starts.

Concerns from House members follow recent reports from The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times detailing a “history of alleged pregnancy discrimination, sexual harassment, suppression of efforts to organize, efforts to evade labor regulations by misclassifying truck drivers, and unsafe and hazardous working conditions in violation of federal labor and safety standards at XPO Logistics,” the letter points out.

In addition to highlighting disturbing reports of mistreated female employees who were pregnant, Rep. Cohen also called attention to the treatment of truckers.

“According to The Los Angeles Times, XPO Logistics at the ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Oakland, California, is also alleged to be engaged in misclassifying short-haul truck drivers as independent contractors rather than employees, rendering thousands of truck drivers ineligible for unemployment benefits, disability pay or workers’ compensation,” the letter explained.

XPO provided Land Line with the following response regarding mistreatment of employees:

“In our response to the inquiry from Sen. Blumenthal and others today, we emphasized that at XPO we have an absolute commitment to providing a safe workplace for all our employees. We take seriously recent allegations concerning one of our warehouses and have launched an independent investigation. The investigation is being conducted by Tina Tchen, a leading expert in gender equity and workplace cultural compliance, who we first engaged in May to conduct an overall review of our workplace culture. When the investigation is completed, we are committed to implementing any recommended improvements. At the same time, we’re taking proactive steps to enhance our policies. After months of development, with expert input, we’re offering our employees a set of progressive new policies and benefits to provide increased support to pregnant employees, paid family leave, and 30 new types of wellness benefits for women and families. Our new approach is tailor-made to provide the kind of support pregnant women need, without impact for any temporary change in the nature of their work.

“We look forward to sharing more details about the work we do to foster a culture of respect and information regarding the enhanced policies and benefits we are launching to support women and families with these representatives.”

XPO’s new “pregnancy care policy” can be viewed here.

 

 

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