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Preliminary findings from the biennial State of Working America from the Economic Policy Institute.

Keep up to date on Boeing negotiations on the "IAM Boeing News" page on goiam.org. Video, press releases, updates and news stories are available.

President Bush signed Fast Track legislation that will usher in a new round of NAFTA-style agreements.

To get the Facts about 'Free Trade'  and its damaging effect on America's workers, read "The Real Cost of 'Free' Trade" from Vermont Congressman Bernie Sanders.

Live Here if You Dare

Join Eastern Territory IAM members in a tour of the Maquiladora area in Tijuana, Mexico to see firsthand the deplorable living and working conditions of Mexican workers.

Get Your Convention Gear Check out gear for the 2004 IAM Convention


Executive Council

International President 
R. Thomas Buffenbarger 

Secretary Treasurer
Donald E. Wharton 

GVP Western 
Lee Pearson 

GVP Canada
Dave Ritchie 

GVP Midwest 
Alex M. Bay 

GVP Headquarters
Robert V. Thayer

GVP Southern
George Hooper 

GVP Eastern
Warren L. Mart 

GVP Transportation
Robert Roach, Jr.


Tuesday,  September 17, 2002

Boeing Contract Voted Down
Machinists at Boeing rejected the company’s ‘last, best and final’ offer by a 62 percent margin, but failed to achieve the two-thirds majority necessary for a strike. Under terms of the IAM Constitution, the company’s contract offer took effect automatically.

“Our Constitution, a document written by IAM members, requires a two thirds vote to authorize a strike. That super majority protects our members from sacrificing their earnings and savings when the support necessary to sustain a strike does not exist,” explained IP Tom Buffenbarger.

“For the next three years, our members will work under the terms of a contract that the majority felt was inadequate. The IAM will make the best of a bad situation by doing everything in our power to aggressively represent our members,” pledged the IP.

Workers at Diversifiée Edelstein Ltée Go IAM
The 16 workers at Montreal’s Diversifiée Edelstein Ltée in Ville Lasalle, specializing in the manufacture of adhesive tape, are now IAM members. All workers had signed union cards and made a certification request for IAM representation. Management, unhappy with the situation, contested the IAM certification request. Following two days of hearings at the Canadian Labour Commission, the IAM received the right to represent the workers on September 6, 2002.

Transportation Bill Includes Amtrak Funding
The AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department (TTD), representing 35 member unions in airline, rail, maritime and surface transportation, is urging union members across the country to rally around a transportation appropriations bill that includes $2.1 billion in funding for Amtrak.

The bill, (S. 2808), more than doubles the Bush administrations budget request and represents a long overdue investment in the nation’s national rail system. “Amtrak has the support of the American public and deserves realistic funding to make U.S. rail travel the same reliable utility it is in every other industrialized country,” said Transportation GVP Robert Roach, Jr.

San Fran Hotel Workers Win First Contract
After a long struggle, members of the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees (HERE) Union, Local 2, approved a first contract for nearly 900 workers at the downtown San Francisco Marriott Hotel.

In September 2000, delegates to the IAM Grand Lodge Convention, staying at a nearby union hotel, staged a massive street rally in support of the Local 2 workers. More than 2000 IAM delegates, family members and representatives marched to the Marriott Hotel to stand with dishwashers, chambermaids and hotel staff looking for their first union contract.

Pay and benefits for hotel workers will rise under the new contract, with Marriott paying any increases in the costs of the medical coverage.

Weekly Jobless Claims Rise to 426,000
Initial jobless claims for the week ending Sept. 7 climbed to the highest level in more than four months, according to U.S. Labor Department figures.

Weekly jobless figures increased more than expected to 426,000, with the four-week moving average of initial jobless claims hitting 409,500.

The Labor Department pointed to devastating job losses in manufacturing and continued weakness in high tech industries. Drought conditions, rising health insurance costs and an ongoing travel recession all point toward the possibility of a double dip recession, where a weak recovery loses steam and reverts back to negative economic growth.

GOPAC Ad on Social Security Scorched
A Republican-sponsored television commercial attacking Social Security and targeting African-Americans came under blistering criticism from the NAACP. Julian Bond, NAACP chairman, called the ad "wrong on the facts and outrageous in intent."

The commercial was withdrawn after a public outcry. GOPAC, a Republican political action committee chaired by Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating, sponsored the commercial. The ad called Social Security "reverse reparations" which blacks must pay to whites.

"Social Security is not unfair to blacks. Social Security has helped promote equal opportunity  and it has benefited all Americans, including African-Americans," Bond said.

He added that 45 percent of retired African-Americans depend on Social Security for 90 percent or more of their retirement income.

"Republicans are pushing partial privatization of Social Security by attacking and trying to demonize the very core of the program itself... it is really just pushing the President's agenda of privatizing Social Security and it is flat-out wrong," Bond said.

Washington Post Staff Fights for Union Rights
The IAM is lending support to the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild in their fight for a new contract at one of the nation’s largest newspapers, the Washington Post.

An attempt by Post management to completely remove union security language from the commercial and newsroom workers’ agreement is drawing union outrage from across the country.

“We are prepared to extend out full support to the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild,” wrote IP Buffenbarger in a letter to Post management. “This will include widespread support for the Guild’s subscription pledge campaign, which calls on members and their families to cancel subscriptions until the Post agrees to a fair contract settlement.”

More information on this important fight for collective bargaining rights is available on the Guild’s website at http://www.wbng.org/post/bulletins/2002/080602.html.