Category Archives: unions

Florida Boeing engineers join SPEEA

Engineers at Boeing Flight Services of Miami voted this month to join the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace, the union said.

Engineers at the growing Miami site work closely with engineers at Boeing’s Puget Sound locations, who are represented by SPEEA.

“These employees asked for our help and we are pleased to help them gain the voice at work they need and deserve,” SPEEA president Tom McCarty said in a statement.”

The election was held by the National Labor Relations Board.

There are only two engineers at the facility. They join more than 15,600 engineers in SPEEA’s professional unit, the union said.


SPEEA petitions for Trade Act assistance for laid-off Spirit AeroSystems workers

Spirit AeroSystems engineering and professional and technical union has filed a petition with the U.S. Department of Labor seeking training, income support and other benefits for laid-off workers through the federal Trade Act.

The filing was made by the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace as Spirit announced a second round of layoffs in two months.

Trade Act funding is designed to help laid-off workers impacted by increased imports or companies moving work to other countries.

If approved, the laid-off employees at Spirit can apply for additional assistance, such as long-term training tuition allowance, income support, health care tax credit and job search and relocation allowances, SPEEA said.

Spirit announced Thursday that it will be offering voluntary retirements, voluntary layoffs and will also have involuntary layoffs as it works to reduce costs. A number has not been determined, the company said.

The cuts will affect salaried employees and managers.

In July, Spirit laid off 360 employees in Wichita and Tulsa. The company employs about 10,750 in Wichita.




SPEEA to hold meetings for Spirit AeroSystems laid-off workers

Spirit AeroSystems’ engineering and professional and technical union is holding a series of meetings today (Wednesday) to help represented employees laid off last week.

The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace will hold the meetings at its office at 973 S. Glendale on the lower level of Parklane Shopping Center.

Representatives from the state’s Department of Labor Unemployment Insurance, the Wichita Workforce Center and Kansas Consumer Credit Counseling Service will be on hand to give an overview and answer questions.

Spirit laid off about 360 salaried support and managers on Thursday, the first major cut in its company’s history. That includes more than 200 SPEEA-represented employees.

Because of limited seating, meeting times are based on the first letter of the last name.

A-H 10 a.m. to noon

I-R 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

S-Z 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

SPEEA: Boeing to cut engineers and technical workers in the Northwest as it strives to send more work to Moscow

Boeing is pushing to send more engineering and technical work to its Moscow Design Center as it plans to cut its engineering and technical workforce in the Pacific Northwest, according to the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace.

Boeing said this week that it plans to cut its engineering and technical workforce by 1,500 to 1,700 people in the Northwest.

“We find it extremely disappointing that Boeing Commercial Airplanes is actively outsourcing engineering work to the Moscow Design Center while laying off employees in the Northwest,” said Ray Goforth, SPEEA executive director, said in a statement.

SPEEA is working to get more information.

The action to cut the workforce could result in 700 layoffs, SPEEA said.

The union and Boeing managers are helping employees find new positions within the company.






SPEEA presents Boeing with a contract proposal for technical and engineering workers

Boeing and its engineers and technical union are back at the negotiating table Thursday after the union presented the company with a proposal to incorporate areas of agreement from the ongoing contract negotiations and extend the contracts for another four years.

The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace presented Boeing with the offer during negotiations on Wednesday with assistance from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

An agreement between the parties would stem off a strike by 23,000 engineers and technical workers in two SPEEA units in Washington, Oregon and Utah.

In October, engineers rejected Boeing’s offer of a contract by 95.5 percent; technical workers rejected it by 97 percent.

Since negotiations resumed this month, union members have increased preparations for a potential work stoppage.

A strike would impact Spirit AeroSystems, which builds parts of all Boeing commercial airliners.

“These negotiations have been going on for more than a year,” Tom McCarty, SPEEA president, said in a statement. “At this point, we should move forward with the items upon which we can agree, and leave the status quo in place for the remaining items.”

SPEEA also asked Boeing to continue to meet with a federal mediator “to tackle the difficult issues that have proven so divisive in these negotiations,” the union said in a statement.


Spirit AeroSystems, engineering union reach tentative contract agreement

Spirit AeroSystems and its engineering union have reached a tentative agreement on a new six-year contract, the two announced Friday.

The agreement between the company and the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace’s Wichita Engineering Unit was reached late Thursday.

Union negotiators and its council unanimously recommend acceptance.

SPEEA represents 811 engineers at Spirit.

The company’s offer includes a minimum salary guarantee fund of 3 percent in the second and fourth year of the contract, with funds in the remaining years to be based on the market, said Bob Brewer, SPEEA Midwest director.

It also includes compensated travel time, increases to an incentive award plan, $2,500 ratification bonus, financial incentives to reduce employees’ cost of insurance premiums, premium-free dental coverage and improvement on job security issues and outsourcing, Brewer said.

Under the proposal, engineers would pay 15 percent of the cost of insurance premiums next year, followed by 16 percent in 2014, 18 percent in 2015 and 20 percent in the remaining years.

At the same time, the plan offers better coverage and lower co-pays and deductibles, Brewer said.

“I think without a doubt, the two teams worked very well together,” Brewer said. “We had a common goal and objective to get this done right the first time.”

Main table negotiations began Oct. 29. Both sides have been meeting in subcommittees since Sept. 12.

SPEEA members vote on whether to accept the proposal Dec. 11 at Curtis Middle School at 1031 S. Edgemoor.

Doors open at 4:30 p.m. with a meeting at 5:00. Voting concludes after the meeting.

Machinists union negotiators enter federal mediation over Learjet strike

With a strike at Bombardier Learjet in its fifth week, the Machinists union’s negotiating committee entered into federal mediation on Wednesday, the union said on its website.

George Cohen, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service director, said in a statement Friday that the mediation service has asked the company and the union to return to negotiations with federal mediators. The two parties agreed.

The FMCS, the union and the company also agreed not to make any public comment until further notice, Cohen said in a statement.

Learjet Machinists struck the company Oct. 8 after members rejected its proposal of a five-year labor agreement and voted for a work stoppage. The biggest issue was substantial cost increases in medical insurance.

Machinists negotiators recommend rejection of Learjet labor contract and a strike

Negotiators for the Machinists union recommend its members at Bombardier Learjet reject the company’s proposal of a five-year labor contract and vote to strike when they go to the polls on Saturday.

The offer gives no raises in the first year of the contract and a 1 percent raise in each of the four years after.

It retains pension plans for the represented workers, but increases health care costs dramatically, said union spokesman Bob Wood.

A main sticking point is the increase in health insurance costs, Wood said. The union also dislikes the length of the contract.

The company kept noting how the market for business jets is weak, Wood said.

But it will turn around, he said.

In the meantime,”they’re trying to lock us in,” he said.

A three-year agreement would be better because the situation could be readdressed at that time.

Union members are scheduled to vote at the Cotillion Ballroom on Saturday.

SPEEA recommends members at Boeing in Puget Sound reject contract offer

Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace negotiators are recommending that members of its professional and technical unit in Puget Sound reject Boeing’s offer of a labor contract.

SPEEA bargaining unit council members voted unanimously to recommend rejection.

The union says that the offer includes wage pools that are the lowest since 1975, and that the offer increases costs for medical benefits, changes retireee benefits and eliminates disability and life insurance benefits for those on military leave.

The union represents 23,000 professional and technical workers at Boeing in Puget Sound.

Votes will be counted Oct. 1. Members aren’t voting on whether to strike.

A strike vote could come later, the union said.

“A strong rejection of these contract offers will send a loud message to Boeing corporate leaders that they must return to negotiations ready to actually negotiate a contract that respects our contributions,” union leaders said in a statement.


Frank Molina replacing long-time Machinists District 70 president Steve Rooney

Frank Molina has been elected president and directing business representative of the Machinists Union District 70, replacing Steve Rooney, who has held the position for about a dozen years.

The change is the result of a vote by Machinist union members. Results are posted on the union’s website.

Lynne Strickland was elected District 70 secretary-treasurer.

District 70 business representatives elected or re-elected include Becky Ledbetter, Tony Larkin, Rita Rogers, Steve Elder, Greg Treadwell and Brent Allen.

Molina is a former union business representative for Cessna Aircraft.