IAM 751 issues analysis of Boeing contract offer

IAM 751 issued an analysis of Boeing’s most recent contract offer and of the contract that was rejected in a November 13 vote.

751’s president, Tom Wroblewski, accompanied the analysis with a message to members. This is below the jump (there isn’t a unique link to it).

We’ve asked Boeing for its analysis. If it supplies one, we’ll post it.

Meanwhile, at a time when tensions are high, a little warped sarcasm might lighten the mood a bit. Here it is from a columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Many of you have asked for more information about Boeing’s counterproposal from Thursday. To help you understand all the problems our Business Reps and I found with the counterproposal, I asked my staff to come up with an analysis of how Boeing’s first offer from November compares to Boeing’s latest offer.

I think you’ll agree with us that Boeing’s demands for concessions on retirement and health benefits – plus limits on future wages – were unreasonable, especially considering how we have delivered record numbers of airplanes and record profit margins this year. And, if you compare the two latest offers, you’ll see that the only real difference between November’s offer and the more-recent one is that Boeing proposed to take away just a fraction less.

To repeat what I’ve said previously, it’s important that you understand Boeing has withdrawn the offer it made to the Business Reps and I on Thursday, which means we are not in a position to put it to a membership vote. When Boeing proposed the offer that afternoon, the company leaders in the room told us the offer was only valid so long as we recommended acceptance of the proposal and agreed to sell it on the shop floor.

When we replied that we couldn’t in good faith encourage you to vote for a proposal like this — which would destroy our retirement benefits, significantly raise medical costs and sharply limit your future earnings — Boeing rescinded the offer.

I understand that a Boeing spokesman is telling reporters something different today, but that’s not the message that your Business Reps and I got at the bargaining table Thursday. Therefore, I’m taking Boeing leadership at their word in saying the offer is now off the table.

Obviously, this is all confusing and upsetting. However, it’s important for you to have as many facts as possible. I think you will agree that this latest offer was very similar to what you already voted down by a two to one majority. However, there was nothing to vote on since Boeing pulled the offer because we wouldn’t agree to their demand that we recommend acceptance and sell it on the shop floor.

In solidarity,

Tom W.

15 Comments on “IAM 751 issues analysis of Boeing contract offer

  1. My observation (for what it counts)
    looks to me that Boeing decided to leave Washington even before the first offer.
    Bad words erupted playing to boeing advantage.
    Giving a 500 dollar increase “bite” for dentals.. And 5000 more dollars on the “sign your frozen future” bonus is also an insult. I guess machinist should stop to work for a company that has decided to leave, soon or later they will be out of job anyway.
    Why trying to keep in house an hostile individual? This is valid for the Washington state as well for Boeing. All this saga will be at the detriment of quality and safety craftsmanship (and delivery capability) in the airspace industry. All this discussions are going to be close to the familiar “coffin corner” unless Boeing recognize the social impact of its presence in the west coast and the machinists realize their social commitment to the no.1 aerospace industry as well. The 777x is splitting all the harmony required to build the finest air machine (after the 787) wich its second line left Washington already.
    Ps thank you Leehamnews, excellent reporting!

  2. The way Boeing is going, two things are evident:
    1) They are leaving Puget Sound quickly, and
    2) They don’t care if the IAM strikes in 2016. I predict a protracted walkout if a deal isn’t reached, just in time to play havoc with flight test and assembly of the MAX and delivery of the first prototype parts for the 777X. If the contract isn’t extended, probably 6-9 months walkout, at least, to show the displeasure of the raw deals the company is giving the union. If I were the union, I’d be telling members to start saving now for up to 9 months walkout.

    I have a beef with the union, and their fantasyland dreams of forever rising wages and benefits. But the reality is the company has 20 years left in the Puget Sound and has to make the unions just happy enough to not strike. The company is playing hardball at exactly the wrong time, and I think they’re distracting the press and the rank and file from this fact by playing these games sending out RFPs and whatnot.

  3. Raw deal? This is the United States. You’re free to change jobs. If you don’t like your employer, change your job. Give me a break.

  4. When they lose their jobs and have to go on the Obamacare website they will find out what medical insurance really costs. And, terminating defined benefit plans and pushing defined contribution plans is the future for everyone.

    • And, terminating defined benefit plans and pushing defined contribution plans is the future for everyone.

      That’s what employers want you to believe anyway, who of course are completely unbiased in all this.

  5. Gee frank. Because you pay more, IAM members must pay more. Just to be fair to you right?
    As to your vision of the future.
    Why is that so? Who decided that?

    I know, the IAM has to give up their pensions because that’s what all the ‘cool kids’ are doing these days.

    For years, Boeing peddled the pension, the 401K, and Social security, as the three legged stool of retirement security. Looks like they want to kick one leg out huh?

    Actually. Mr. McNerney in his role with the business round table wants to kick out the Social Security leg as well.

    What happens when no pension of any kind, no 401k, no nothing is decided upon as the ‘new normal’?
    We have no stool left. Which means we have….wait for it….SQUAT!.

  6. From Boeing being lovey dovey to knife in the back in 2 short years:

    “For Boeing, the agreement reflects a new era in relations with its largest labor union, as the company and the IAM work together on issues of safety, quality and competitiveness. It also adds stability as the company continues to ramp up its production rates across all programs.”

  7. The entitlement mindset in our culture is now terminal.
    Quite a few unions have ultimately terminated their employer’s existence.
    Does the UAW have much of a presence in Korea? Japan? China?

    • So, Mr. Morgan, When Boeing turns it’s back on 8+ billion dollars of Wa State largess, and goes state to state demanding more in exchange for allowing it’s citizens to feed themselves, what is that?

      Ever seen a labor action in south Korea? Well now you can:

      Japan? Oh yes.

      As for china, their unions strike when the state tells them to. Other than that, they die on the job, commit suicide, or get shot in the back of the head by…the state.

      But I do agree on your 777 snap together theory. I believe that has been the plan from day one. In fact, i expect one line in Everett, and one somewhere else. You know, so Everett can deliver airplanes while the remote site flails and loses money.

    • The entitlement mindset in our culture is now terminal.

      Of course, you only think that the entitlement mindset of Joe Lunchbox is terminal. Not the sense of entitlement displayed, e.g., by Boeing in the RFP they sent out.

      • The point was “Entitlement” being terminal (raging cancer) will ultimately kill our one time economic power house. Unions, politicians, pro athletes, movie stars, lawyers, welfare, etc, yes, AND the very fat cats at the tops of industries/heads of corporations.
        It isn’t just $$$ entitlement. Medical patients are entitled to an ideal outcome every time, no matter what pre-existing conditions complicate/hinder the outcome.

        I didn’t say there are no unions in Asia. Does UAW mgmt get any of those dues?

        I have personally seen union members “high fiveing” after very intentionally putting a small company out of business that paid union wages and benefits, but allowed non-union workers within their company. This little company was competing for work/contracts with other all union companies in the area, so it was “justifiable”…….

        Look at what happened to grocery store check-out workers who, with the help of unions/strikes, became overly well paid since it was truly a “skilled” position. The industry by-passed them with scanners/technology. Now it is a non skilled position.

        The same is happening in all industries including agriculture. The emphasis is replace workers with robots/technology by invention. It is a booming field.
        Then a few skilled employees to keep all of the machines functioning.

        Look all across the northeastern tier of the USA. Former industrial powerhouse cities, states that lost their industries. The companies either were bled to death-or moved production elsewhere. Now those cities and states themselves are being bled to death by their government unions.

        “Full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes, I’m gonna get mine-no matter what the ultimate cost to others….”

        I’m just saying lets look at previous patterns (history) here, and what is healthiest in the big picture-as we chose our economic fate.

  8. It is sad to see this happening to a great company. The decline in the relationship is due to both sides actions. I think that Boeing was unhappy with the Puget Sound as far back as the initial site selection for the 787. They were stabbed and taken for granted by the state as they ramped up for the initial 777, as in we need to buy additions to a freeway that we built, because too many others use it. Etc.

    They are ready to diversify plant locations and not be hostage for ALL of the production to strike action. If WA gets to keep the 777X it will be the bolt it together final assembly.

    • They were so unhappy they took billions in state incentives.
      A spirit of spite and naked mendacity will do that to the powerful.
      I wouldn’t put it past them to do it again on Christmas eve.

  9. So, if Boeing really is such an ultimately mean, nasty, vicious company-do them, and yourselves, a BIG favor and QUIT!
    All of the energy, emotion, and rage that you guys spend hating Boeing-can’t be healthy for any of you. Bow out. Find nirvana.
    When you militant unionist gather at break time to all spontaneously get each other and your fellow workes riled up again. Wow! You guys are shortening/sacrificing the most valuable thing each of you have-your health/lives. It is not a maybe. It will eat you from within.
    Ask the family members who have known you the best and longest, “Has this battle with Boeing changed me (my personality) at all?”
    Ask yourself, “Am I who I really want to be?” Is this “all incessant battle” destroying me, my family, my friendships?” You do realize there are a lot of costs here that don’t fit into any balance sheet, right?
    Introspection is a healthy thing.
    This is also part of the “big picture” that should be seriously considered.

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