FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, D.C., August 24, 2012 – Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) at Hawker Beechcraft Corp. in Wichita, KS voted overwhelmingly today to approve a pension plan modification that preserves members’ ability to retire under current terms of the plan. The contract change also protects existing retirees’ pension benefits.
The District 70, Local 733 Bargaining Committee endorsed the modification, which was proposed by Hawker as part of an effort to restructure its finances and emerge from bankruptcy.
“While the current defined benefit plan will be frozen for future accruals, the benefits and options of the plan will continue to be available to members when they retire,” said IAM Aerospace Coordinator Ron Eldridge. “Protecting pension benefits has been an objective of this bargaining committee since Hawker declared bankruptcy earlier this year. It is a credit to everyone involved that we were able to achieve this goal.”
The change approved today was limited to the pension portion of the current IAM-HBC collective bargaining agreement. All other elements of the current contract, including wage rates, work rules and health care coverage will remain unchanged.
The contract change still requires approval by the bankruptcy judge.
The IAM represents more than 3,000 active and laid off workers at Hawker Beechcraft and is one of the largest industrial trade unions in North America, representing nearly 100,000 aerospace workers among 700,000 active and retired members in dozens of industries. For more information about the IAM, visit www.goiam.org.