The IAM announced this week that federal mediators scheduled negotiations between the union and Vought Aircraft Industries for Nov. 12, 13 and 14 in Nashville, TN.
“IAM negotiators have been ready and willing to meet with Vought representatives since members rejected a company proposal to replace the established pension plan for many employees with a risky 401(k) plan,” said IAM Aerospace Coordinator Ron Eldridge. “The events of the last few weeks confirm beyond any doubt how unreliable a 401(k)-based retirement plan can be.”
The strike has been marked by extraordinary unity among members and the community, despite Tennessee’s status as a so-called right-to-work (for less) state. The struggle at Vought has also inspired letters from international union federations, expressing global solidarity from as far away as Sweden, Great Britain and Denmark.
Members of Local 735 at Vought have been on strike since their contract expired on Sept. 27, 2008. “We will go to the table with the hope of resolving this strike,” said Eldridge. “Our members are determined that there must be a fair and equitable resolution to this dispute.”