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Machinists want chance to vote on contract offer

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boeing1EVERETT – Boeing Machinists worry they’re being left out of negotiations over the future the 777x.

Boeing says their latest offer is still on the table, but union officials say it’s not.

Just days after talks stalled between Boeing and the International Association of Machinists, several workers pleaded for another chance to cast a ballot on Boeing’s latest contract offer.

“Both the union and Boeing could have done it better. They both messed up on that but let’s get the vote out now, work on the little things later,” says machinist Rob LaJudice.

“We don’t know who to believe,” says machinist Paul Fritzler. “The best bet is to give the machinists the information, put it to a vote, let us decide.”

“We want the ability to vote. We don’t want union executives choosing for us. We want to make our own choice. They’re there to represent us not choose for us,” says machinist Adam Subitch.

Last month, machinists overwhelmingly rejected Boeing’s 8-year contract extension by a 2 to 1 margin.

The aerospace company wants employees to contribute more money to health care plans and it wants new employees to pay into a retirement plan instead of a traditional pension.

But since union officials rejected Boeing’s latest offer last Thursday, some machinists say confusion is ruling the factory floor.

“My gut feeling is if we’re not allowed to vote of if it is a no vote that Boeing will pull the 777X out of Washington,” says Fritzler.

Boeing is looking at more than 50 locations in 21 other states as options for the 777x production line. That reality is setting in for some workers.

“I could see that happening, I could see them moving somewhere. They could hit some bump in the roads like they did in South Carolina but it’s a learning curve with the employees down there.  Soon enough, within five years, South Carolina is going to be in tip-top shape,” says LaJudice.

Without a chance for rank-and-file employees to cast their ballot this time, some worry that Boeing will pack up and ship out of Everett for good.

“We’re going to become another Detroit,” says Fritzler.

Boeing says there aren’t yet any new scheduled negotiations.

But political leaders in Snohomish county and Olympia are urging union leaders to let the machinists cast their vote.

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  • John Ammeter

    This is so typical of the unions attitude…. don't let the members vote until they've been "advised" how to vote. I worked in a union shop for 30 years and spent nearly ALL of those years disgusted with the union and their actions…. the union is NOT there for the workers. It's only there for the advancement and pay of the union officials…

  • 787mechanic

    A couple hundred machinists calling for a vote, does not jusify bringing this contract to our membership for a vote. Stop wasting everyone’s time. This contract will fail, just like the last.

  • Anonymous

    I’m glad that you enjoy letting other people make your decisions for you but everyone I have spoken with want to have their vote counted.

  • 787mechanic

    It sickens me that everyone slams the union, but everyone is ok with Boeing threatening it’s employees, and extorting money from the state, when they are making billions of dollars a year. Perfect. Let’s just give every company welfare that threatens to move. In the meantime, we will all foot the bill.

    • jeff

      Reality check, it's the governor who is offering Boeing tax breaks to stay and at the same time raising taxes on everyone else. Why are the politicians doing this, so Boeing the its political donations can stay here in Washington. No one is blameless in this deal. The Machinist Union is biting the hand that feeds them.

  • jeff

    It's time for the governor to propose legislation that will force a vote by the union, or de-certify the union altogether. The union leadership are not looking out for what is best for their members, only what is best for their self interest. Can anyone say Hostess?