MACHINIST UNION MEMBERS GO ON STRIKE AGAINST BOEING COMPANY
September 06, 2008
(EVERETT, WA) -- Boeing machinists have decided it’s time to hit the bricks. Members of the International Association of Machinists union began their strike against the Boeing Company at 12:01 this morning outside a Boeing plant in Everett after union officials and company negotiators failed to reach agreement on a new contract.
On strike for the American dream
Some union members were angry that union officials delayed the strike for 48 hours in order to try and negotiate a last minute settlement with the company.
In a statement released to the media Boeing Commercial Airplanes Chief Executive Scott Carson said, "unfortunately, the differences were too great to close."
Most of the union members on strike are right here in the Puget Sound area, about 25,000 workers in all. There are an additional 1200 members in Portland and about 700 in Wichita, Kansas. Production of Boeing jets came to a halt with the strike.
Machinist union members voted by an 80 percent majority last Wednesday to reject Boeing's final offer and 87 percent voted to strike. On Thursday and Friday, Boeing production in some areas was affected as some union members called in sick.
Friday afternoon a bomb threat caused the evacuation of some 90 workers at the Auburn parts plant. A police bomb squad was called in after a suspicious package wrapped in duct tape was found in a restroom. The package was determined to be a hoax made to look like a real bomb. It is unknown if the package was strike related and it remains unknown who left the package.
A Boeing spokesman said the company would deliver completed airplanes to customers but the company does not intend to assemble airplanes at this time.
The four major issues of disagreement on a new contract are job security, wages, pension and health care. No new contract talks are scheduled.