The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA) and the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers Local 2709 (IAM) have reached a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract.
Boeing said that, if ratified on 15 November, the contract will end a strike at its Oak Ridge facility that began on 6 August. Employees will be scheduled to return to work starting on 27 November.
Boeing has also announced programmes for IAM-represented employees facing lay-offs because work was transferred to other locations to meet customer commitments during the strike. These programmes include opening a Career Transition Center, keeping affected employees on the Boeing payroll for 60 days, and extending health care benefits for these employees and their families.
Boeing said that the terms of the contract offer include a 5% wage increase on 1 December 2006, a 3% increase in August 2007 and a further 3% increase in August 2008.
To keep its commercial aircraft assembly lines operating during the strike, Boeing transferred production of 737 and 777 flight deck consoles from Oak Ridge to other locations. Additional commercial aircraft manufacturing work was recalled by prime contractors. As a result, daily operations will be reduced from three shifts to one shift and employment at the Oak Ridge facility will be adjusted from approximately 480 prior to the strike to around 275. Approximately 180 IAM-represented employees will be laid off once the strike ends, while approximately 25 salary and management employees will be laid off in the first quarter of 2007.
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