In 1989, to settle a RICO lawsuit brought about by the U.S. Justice Department, the union signed a Consent Decree (go here to view the Concent Decree) agreed to the creation of an Independent Review Board (IRB). Since its creation, the IRB has barred more than 300 individuals from the union for alleged corruption. [To go to the IRB's website, go here.]
Under its current president, James P. Hoffa, son of the legendary Teamsters president James R. Hoffa, the union still contends with accusations of corruption from time to time.
In 1999, soon after assuming the presidency of the Teamsters, James P. Hoffa (son of legendary IBT President Jimmy Hoffa) established Project RISE (which stood for Respect, Integrity, Strength, and Ethics). The purpose of Project RISE was to create a board to clean up the union from within and eventually rid the union of the IRB and its related costs.
However, only a few years later, Project RISE's chief architect and investigator resigned in a stinging rebuke to President Hoffa, stating in a letter that "he [Teamsters President Jim Hoffa] has backed away from the Teamsters' anti-corruption plan in the face of pressure from a few self-interested individuals." [To read the letter, go here.]
To be sure, in many ways, the Teamsters' union is not the Teamsters union of old. However, whether or not the union has competely rid itself of corruption is the subject of considerable debate. To view ongoing articles of corruption within the Teamsters, go here.
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