Regarding the letter, “No takeaways for management”: I felt compelled to write to correct some misconceptions. Everyone at Boeing, with the exception of corporate executives in Chicago, are giving back. SPEEA did in its last contract, which is similar to what is now being offered to the Machinists. The office support are really taking it in the shorts, and beginning in January, all managers lose overtime. They will be required to work, but will not get any overtime for it. They have the same retirement plan that is now being sought for the Machinists. Is this a good contract? No, it leaves a bitter taste in my mouth, but we have no choice.
Times have changed, unions are not powerful as they once where, even the mighty UAW has realized that concessions need to be made to keep their employers in business. Whether it be corporate greed, or the economy, or stiff competition, the American manufacturer can no longer compete in the world that is decidedly stacked against it. We have the Chinese to worry about. There is Japan, and Europe, which heavily subsidizes Airbus.
I am fifth generation Boeing, and I don’t like this offer, but I also can’t fathom the idea of a great company leaving after 100 years. I can’t even imagine a Washington without Boeing, but Detroit comes pretty close. Is the company’s offer blackmail? Some might look it as such, but it is in fact only business to them, and they have no choice either. What is the point of a union, if there is no longer a company around for those union workers to work for? The letter writer is right on several fronts, this is a monumental decision, and will be forever life-changing for current and future Boeing employees. He is also correct in his statement that “Boeing will continue to build the worlds best airplanes”, unfortunately for us, they just wont be built in Washington.
Richard and Desiree Peterson