North Carolina Local Signs Unique Pact with Spirit AeroSystems

IAM President Buffenbarger and Spirit AeroSystems CEO Jeff Turner spoke with members of newly-chartered Local 350 in Kinston, NC following the signing of a first contract with Spirit.

Freshly-chartered Local 350 in Kinston, NC is kicking into high gear with a ground-breaking contract between the IAM and Spirit AeroSystems that includes language allowing for changes as the accord moves forward. This “living agreement” model has already proved its worth, with the addition of a Blue Cross/Blue Shield health care plan with the same premiums and cost-sharing as the previous plan, but with more than triple the number of providers in the network.

“This is a nimble agreement, where we can adapt to meet the needs of a workforce and company in an ever-changing, highly-competitive global economy,” said Aerospace Coordinator Ron Eldridge, who helped broker the new contract. The Spirit facility in Kinston is a supplier to Airbus and Gulfstream.

International President Tom Buffenbarger and Headquarters General Vice President Rich Michalski joined Spirit AeroSystems CEO Jeff Turner for a tour of the facility, where they addressed a meeting of the entire Spirit workforce.

“Our contract with Spirit is an example of a unique partnership between a highly-skilled workforce and a cutting-edge company who both want to succeed,” said Buffenbarger. “There is no industry in the world as dynamic as aerospace and I believe we’ve created a collective bargaining relationship that can adapt to that reality.”