For Immediate Release Contact: Andrew Moesel
April 8, 2010 212-725-2378(w); 347-852-3140(m)
New York, NY– President of Teamsters Local 237 Gregory Floyd expressed sadness and respect for his predecessor, former Local 237 President Carl Haynes, who died Thursday of a heart attack at a hospital near his home in New Rochelle. Haynes, who served as president from 1993 to 2007, was 76.
“It is tremendously sad to have lost such a true and loyal Teamster. Carl Haynes was a giant of labor, and yet always remained humble and compassionate during his many years of service,” said Floyd. “I will always be very grateful to him for giving me my start and showing me how to be a strong labor leader. I will always appreciate the help he gave me and many other Teamsters to make the union what it is today.”
Haynes began his work at Local 237 as a NYCHA housing assistant in 1960. The son of a railroad worker and a graduate of his hometown college, West Virginia State College, Haynes quickly made a name for himself as a skillful negotiator and leader who knew how to represent his co-workers. By 1967, he had become chairman of the 600-member housing assistant chapter and mobilized a strike that would win significant gains for workers.
It would be the beginning of a successful 47-year career. He joined the union staff as a business agent in 1968 and was soon promoted to assistant director and later as director of the union's Housing Division. He became a trustee in 1978 and, in 1983, was elected vice president. He took over the presidency in 1993 and was elected to a five-year term in 1994, and re-elected in 1999 and 2004.
Under his leadership Teamsters Local 237 continued to grow in numbers even as the Giuliani Administration downsized the city’s workforce and squeezed municipal labor unions for significant concessions and givebacks. Local 237 remains the largest local in the 1.4 million-member international Teamsters union.
The Haynes administration also won a number of significant political and legislative victories, including a widely publicized attempt by the Health and Hospitals Corporation to privatize the Union’s 800 Hospital Police Officers in 1999. After fighting for three years, Teamsters Local 237 emerged victorious. Not only did Haynes protect his members’ jobs, he also succeeded in passing a law in the State Legislature that guarantees that hospital police jobs can never be privatized.
Haynes also served on the executive boards of the NYS AFL-CIO, the New York Central Labor Council, and the Municipal Labor Committee (a coalition of 51 city employee unions). He was active for 10 years as vice president and one of two Teamsters Union representatives on the national AFL-CIO Executive Council until 2005, and as one of three union representatives on the executive board of the New York City Employees' Retirement System. He was also on the board of the United Way.
Haynes is survived by his wife Janice Haynes, a daughter, Leann, a son, Jay and three grandchildren, Jason, Brandon, and Camryn, and one great-grandchild, Angel