New S. Carolina governor to fight unionization at Boeing

When South Carolina’s new governor, Nikki Haley takes office in January, she’ll pick Cabinet members who will help fight off attempts to unionize the Boeing Charleston site.

Haley’s nominee to direct the state’s department of labor is Catherine Templeton, a lawyer who has specialized in union fights, has fought United Auto Worker organizing attempts, according to the Associated Press.

Boeing picked the North Charleston site in October 2009 to establish a second final assembly line for its 787. The decision came a year after a contentious strike by its Machinists union in the Puget Sound region, where Boeing’s first 787 line is located.

Only two states have fewer unionized workers than does South Carolina.

“In my experience I have found there is not one company that operates more efficiently when you put another layer of bureaucracy in,” Templeton said. “We will do everything we can to work with Boeing and make sure that their work force is taken care of, that they run efficiently and that we don’t add anything unnecessarily.”

However, Boeing’s unions in Washington

have noted how the company has relied on their experience to solve problems with the 787 created by outsourcing. That’s experience that will take years to create in South Carolina, the unions say.

For more on Boeing and its operations in Charleston, read this Herald special report.

For more on Boeing and its unions, read this Herald special report.

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