Boeing [NYSE: BA] and the United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) formally opened negotiations today for a new collective bargaining agreement. The UAW bargaining unit includes Long Beach-based employees represented by UAW, Local 148, and employees in Melbourne, Ark., represented by UAW, Local 1482.
The employees in Long Beach are part of the Boeing Integrated Defense Systems, Commercial Airplanes and Shared Services Group business units -- largely comprising the C-17 and 717 aircraft programs. The contract affects approximately 2,850 Boeing Long Beach employees and approximately 60 employees in Melbourne who are part of the Commercial Airplanes' Fabrication Division.
"We are working together with our union to gauge the full scope of the issues involved and to negotiate in a cooperative fashion," said Howard Chambers, vice president and general manager of Boeing IDS Airlift and Tanker Programs. "By listening and working together to understand each other's concerns, I'm confident we can successfully reach an agreement."
Jim Phillips, vice president and general manager of the 717 program and BCA's Long Beach Division, said Boeing's key intent is to communicate the company's business realities. "As we all depend on the company's success, we have to work together to enhance our competitiveness," Phillips said. "That's the bottom line."
Formal negotiations with the UAW begin today. Key dates include:
- March 18: Negotiations open in Long Beach, where the UAW presents its formal contract proposal and meetings begin.
- March 29: Non-economic negotiations begin, where the parties share information and discuss changes to the current contract.
- April 15: Economic main-table negotiations begin. The union and company bargaining teams start intensive negotiations.
- April 25: Current UAW contract expires.
- May 2: Contract ratification vote or an information meeting held with union membership.