Friday, June 21, 2002
“Job security; affordable, high-quality health insurance and decent pensions – those will be the key issues in our talks with Boeing,” explains Dick Schneider, IAM aerospace coordinator and chief negotiator.
“Boeing’s profits rose 152 percent during the past four years, while they eliminated thousands of jobs. Ninety-five percent of the membership say their jobs are ‘not secure at all’ or only ‘somewhat secure.’ It’s not right that people at a profitable, world-leading corporation should live in daily fear of losing their jobs,” Schneider said.
With strong corporate profits and a $3 billion surplus in the Boeing pension fund, Schneider said the IAM will press for substantial increases in retirement benefits - including a supplement through the IAM National Pension Fund – and improved, lower cost health insurance coverage.
The IAM’s current three-year contract with Boeing expires Sept. 1. It covers some 20,000 members in Washington state, 5,000 in Kansas and 1,100 in Portland, Oregon.
Survival Crisis Looms
“Amtrak serves a critical role in our nation’s transportation system,” said General Vice President Robert Roach, Jr. “Failure to properly fund Amtrak signs a death warrant for our nation’s passenger rail service.” Responding to the Bush administration’s plan, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), the Chair of the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on transportation, challenged the Bush administration to request enough funding to keep or "be prepared to explain to the American people why it will allow Amtrak to go bankrupt in the middle of the summer travel season."
Senator Murray’s comments can be read at http://murray.senate.gov/~murray/releases/02/06/2002620A03.html
IAM members can add their voice to the debate over Amtrak’s future. Click here (http://www.goiam.org/politics.asp) to send a message to President Bush and Congress. Tell them to protect America’s national passenger rail system.
IMF Conference Endorses Aerospace Resolution
“Despite common challenges faced by the world’s aerospace workers, we have yet to establish an effective framework for trade union cooperation on a global level,” said IP Tom Buffenbarger. “This resolution establishes the framework for substantive coordination on issues including labor laws, organizing and collective bargaining.”
The IMF resolution establishes Aerospace Steering Committees and Task Forces with representatives from the USA, Canada, Brazil, Great Britain, Spain, France Germany, Sweden, Italy and Japan.
“It will be a bright day for labor when one multinational corporation receives similar proposals from aerospace workers in different countries,” said the IP. “Then and only then will multinational corporations understand what true international solidarity means.”
UAL Active Ownership Committee Responds
“While it may be that, as a matter of corporate law, stockholder proposals of this kind must be advisory in nature, the IAM is committed to seeing the board of directors implement the proposals approved by the stockholders,” said the ownership committee. “Failure to respond to the employee owners would indicate that United’s words of cooperation are just words. Now is the time for deeds, not empty promises.”
Text of the letter can be read at http://www.goiam.org/territories.asp?c=3171
Local 623 Member Wins
LeMont serves as educator for her local union and holds the same position in District 165. She is a shop steward and “I am a proud member of the 2002 Blue Ribbon Commission,” she said.
“I have dedicated my life to the work I do and I will fight as hard as I can to make life better for my union brothers and sisters,” LeMont pledged.
This year’s theme is “North America’s Might” and our panel of independent judges will be looking for photos that show IAM members at work doing what they do best. The contest is absolutely free and open to all IAM members. You can obtain a complete contest entry form at www.iamaw.org/publications/2002photocontest/index.htm or by contacting the IAM Communications Department, 301-967-4520.