Boeing, IAM 751 reach labor agreement, settles NLRB case, MAX stays in Seattle

Seattle Times story.

IAM press conference 11am PST. Live video

IAM press release.

Boeing press release.

Brothers and Sisters,
In late October, senior executives from Boeing approached us to ask if we could get together to talk about issues that were going to come up in the 2012 contract talks. We agreed to meet with them to hear what they had to say. What resulted was an ongoing dialog and a series of meetings that ended with a proposal by the Company to extend the current contract with some changes in certain areas — but a huge improvement in job security, which was your No. 1 issue in our first survey for the 2012 contract negotiations.
For these meetings, we pulled together our union negotiating teams, who have experience dealing with the various topics the Company wanted to cover: Health and Benefits, Job Security, Pay, Pension and Incentives. Although we had an idea the Company might want to extend the existing contract, we had to wait until they confirmed it in writing that this was their intent.
We did not publicly announce these talks, for reasons we know you understand. In the past, we’ve gone through negotiations with media, politicians and bloggers second-guessing our moves and trying to determine the outcome while we work against a looming deadline. To make a big public splash this time would have undermined what we were doing and would have gone against the reasons why we agreed to meet with the Company in the first place.
We now know this was the right decision. What has resulted is an unprecedented commitment by Boeing to Puget Sound and Portland for the 737MAX and the related manufacturing that’s currently being performed here. This will generate long-lasting security for our members. It also resulted in a Boeing commitment to the success and continuation of the other airplane programs where our members have shown time and again their expertise, productivity and quality, resulting in increased profits for the Company.
Based on many factors – the current economy, the state of affairs at Boeing and our ability to secure unprecedented Job Security for our members — we unanimously recommend you vote to accept this proposed contract extension.
We need to be clear: this proposal does include some sharing in the increases in Health Care costs, with the amount varying, depending on the plan you choose. Negotiations are about give and take and to achieve gains in Job Security, Pension and Wages, we had to be willing to compromise elsewhere. However, in doing so, we were also able to increase benefit levels in dental and vision, and win protections that cap the amount you will be paying, including guarantees that you won’t have to pay any future federal taxes on health-care plans. In the end, we’ll still have health care benefits far superior to those earned by most workers in our industry, and our nation.
On the plus side, there are some significant improvements, which are outlined on these pages. This should be considered as a full package as you discuss this proposal with your family.
If approved, the proposed four-year extension would be in effect upon ratification through September 8, 2016.  Highlights of the offer include the following:
• We were able to secure the future of the 737MAX for Puget Sound, including  current parts manufacturing,
  assembly and supporting shops, such as the Wire Shop & Interior Shop in Everett.
• Continuing a firm commitment to widebody production in Everett.
• Securing a firm commitment to tanker manufacturing for Puget Sound.
• Securing a firm commitment to P-8 manufacturing for Puget Sound.
• Preserved pension for new hires.
• Pension benefit increases each year of $2 up to $91 per month per year of service as of Jan. 1, 2016.
• Boeing VIP savings plan remains intact, along with Company match.
• General wage increases of 2% each year of the contract.
• Quarterly COLA formula remains the same.
• New program intended to pay bonuses from 2 to 4 percent of annual gross pay (including overtime, shift
  differential pay, team leader pay, etc.), based on achieving easy-to-understand safety, quality and productivity
• Preserved retiree medical benefits for all workers, including future hires – something virtually no other group
  at Boeing has done. The same changes that apply to the plans for active employees apply to retiree medical
  (excluding monthly premium language).
• Members will pay more, with the amount of increase depending on the plan you pick. In the end, we will still
  have health care benefits far superior to those earned by most workers in our industry and our nation. Current
  medical plans in all locations continue to be offered.
• Annual out-of-pocket costs are capped.
• New generic drugs and voluntary health screening programs can reduce increased costs in 2013.
• Machinists won’t pay any federal health care “Cadillac taxes.”
• $5,000, to be paid within 30 days of ratification.
Ultimately it is up to you as members to vote whether to accept this contract extension proposal or reject it. Summaries of the proposed contract extension will be available at all Union Halls, and a complete text of the Company’s proposal will be available online ( We urge you to study them carefully.
Taken as a whole, we think you’ll like what you see. This proposal addresses what you told us was important to you; therefore we recommend you accept it by voting yes.
In Solidarity
Your Union Negotiating Team
Mark A. Blondin
Aerospace Coordinator
Tom Wroblewski
District 751 President/DBR
Robert C. Petroff
Assistant Directing Business Rep W24
Steve Rooney
District 70 President/DBR

9 Comments on “Boeing, IAM 751 reach labor agreement, settles NLRB case, MAX stays in Seattle

  1. Maybe this will contribute to the beginning of a more cooperative and constructive relationship between Management and Labor. It is far more productive if there is mutual regard and respect. There is alot of work in front of the Company and a dedicated and motivated labor force along with responsive management will enable this work to be accomplished.

    It is good to receive this type of news.

    • I fully endorse what you say here. It’s time to make peace and get back to work. The whole future of Boeing was at stake. It definitely looks brighter now.

  2. So with the job security portion of the contract, has Boeing agreed to a FAL of the B-737MAX, KC-46A, and P-8A/I in the Puget Sound area? It is worded funny that Boeing has a “firm commitment to the KC-46 and P-8 MANUFACTURING” but a “commitment to widebody PRODUCTION” in the Puget Sound/Everett areas.

    For contracts like this one, what is the legal difference between manufacturing and production?

  3. With this agreement I would like to say that the Boeing management finally came to its sense and is now showing some of the wisdom that it was clearly lacking in recent years. But I am afraid they came to a settlement because the Boeing case got considerably weaker after JA’s one hour interview that he gave to Dominic Gates of TST. That was nothing less than a public (and labour) relation fiasco that made Boeing look like the bad guy. That day they essentially gave the bargaining power back to the IAM. For the short term anyway.

    Actually the new atmosphere that is slowly setting on Boeing is also good for SPEEA. A lot of engineering work is gradually coming back in house, as well as assembly work. It will inevitably lead to improved labour relations. Which is always a good thing.

    After all, something good might come out of the 787 debacle.

  4. Plan A:
    Design an airplane called the “Dreamliner”, named after sleeping cars ordered in 1946 by the New York Central railroad. Don’t build it at home. Instead, save a buck at any cost by outsourcing everything not nailed down, stick it to the unions, then waste billions of $$$ to deliver a few airplanes 42 months late and getting worse. Then wreck your remaining engineering and manufacturing resources so badly that the ultimate 747 derivative is two years late.

    Oops, that hasn’t worked too well.

    Let’s try this instead

    Plan B:
    Deliver what we promised to deliver, on time and (mostly) within budget, designed and built locally by people who know what they’re doing, and pay them what they’re worth. Been there done that – despite challenges we filled the skies with Boeing 707’s, 727’s, 737-100’s thru the -900’s, 747-100’s thru the -400’s, 757’s, 767’s and 777’s. Go MAX!

  5. After setting aside US health care cost implications, if proposed today a similar labour agreement offered to a European aeronautical employee would be manor from heaven,

    cgh914: Commented on outsourcing, if handled professionally the benefits of third party sourcing are considerable, as a major Boeing competitor has proved. To tie in sourcing & production to satisfy local reliable labour continuity in today’s financial climate is tantamount to commercial suicide.


  6. Phil, you are absolutely correct: “if handled professionally”, That’s how Boeing outsourced until the 787. As for the 787, business and engineering schools all over the world will be studying Boeing’s outsourcing mistakes for decades to come.

  7. So after 2016, Boeing can drop the union? Love it, union shouldn’t have gotten up in arms since Boeing must do what’s right for Boeing, not the union. Would you rather lose 5,000 union workers but still have the company employ 200,000, or be forced for hire 5,000 union workers then go bankrupt…resulting in 205,000 people losing their job?

  8. Ive worked at Boing 24 years my health is not good and Any take away is bad, The 787 was a result of poor judgement Built from greed not Knowledge .and is reflecting so. Zero take aways

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *