Boeing issued the following statement in response to informational pickets by some unions at its Chicago World Headquarters today:
"Since the horrific events of September 11, our customers in the airline industry have been facing unprecedented challenges as they make tough decisions related to their very survival. This forced our Boeing Commercial Airplanes unit to take steps to quickly rightsize its operations to respond to the significant drop in projected near term airplane demand in 2002 and 2003. We are very proud of Alan Mulally, his leadership team and all of our employees in the commercial airplane business and their commitment to our customers. We have reviewed their strategies and plans, and approved them as being consistent with the best interests of our employees, customers, shareholders and communities. As painful as these actions are today, these actions by Boeing Commercial Airplanes will put it in a stronger competitive position when the market regains strength.
"As part of Boeing's new corporate structure, we have moved decision making closer to the businesses and their employees. The role of World Headquarters is focused on strategy and resource allocation. The business units are focused on customers with the full responsibility to plan and run their operations. We believe that the union leadership should redirect their energies to working together with the business leaders for Boeing Commercial Airplanes based in Renton, Wash."