IAM District 751 members working at Cadence Giddens in Everett, WA built on the solid foundation from their first contract when they overwhelmingly approved a second contract on February 18.
After months of preparation, membership input and participation, members voted to ratify their second contract by 90 percent. A lot of hard work and preparation went into these negotiations. Input from the members through surveys and meetings was used to develop the proposals and ensure the proposals encompassed members’ priorities – with wages clearly the top issue.
Improvements were made in nearly every category. Highlights of the new agreement include:
“These members worked hard to prioritize their issues. Their solidarity ensured they were successful in building on the foundation of wage increases and rights secured in the first contract,” said District 751 President Jon Holden. “Members can be proud of the new agreement and continue to build on it in the future.”
“The passionate input by shop floor bargaining committee members conveyed how important it was to address the top issues. Thanks to their input at the table, we were able to secure this agreement,” Holden added.
The new contract also removed language that waived the Union’s right to bargain about non-contractual changes the employer makes and expressly affirmed that the Company would bargain the effects of those changes.
There were other positive changes such as two days paid bereavement leave (previously unpaid bereavement leave), an increase in prescription and non-prescription safety glasses, improved language on promotions and demotions, pay protection in recalls, and removed the previous requirement to work both the day before and the day after a holiday in order to receive holiday pay.
“The members are happy we addressed their concerns over weekend overtime rules, with the scheduled GWI percentages, and the strengthened imminent danger clause. The members are excited to be part of the 751 Savings Plan, as well,” said Gary Naple, who served on the bargaining committee. “At negotiations, we were able to see the company looking at the partnership between the IAM and Cadence Giddens as a positive experience, and together we will both benefit.”
The contract covers about 125 workers at two Cadence-Giddens plants in Everett who produce precision-machined aerospace components, subassemblies and kits, and do sheet-metal forming for parts that go on Boeing, Airbus and Gulfstream jets.
Prior to voting for IAM representation and securing a first contract in 2015, the work environment was very different. Raises were rare and non-existent for many for years. When Cadence suddenly decided to terminate the 401(k) match, that served as the catalyst for workers to seek IAM union representation.
“These gains are a true testament of what can be achieved with unity and determination through the collective bargaining process,” said GVP Allen. “The improvements negotiated are a great example of the power of mobilized workers winning a better life for them and their families.”
Unionization also put a stop to the company’s arbitrary firing of workers for any or no reason. The union contract requires just cause for any disciplinary action, progressive discipline, and lays out a process to challenge and reverse any unjust discipline.
By approving the second contract, members reaffirmed their decision to gain union representation three years ago was good for themselves and their families.