Carpenters in Seattle area go on strike

The walkout for higher pay by carpenters in the state is the first in nearly 20 years.

Associated Press

SEATTLE — A strike by carpenters in Washington state is expected to slow work at hundreds of construction projects across the region, include Microsoft office projects.

The Seattle Times reports the walkout for higher pay by carpenters in the state is the first in nearly 20 years. With a 56% to 44% vote during the weekend, members of the Northwest Carpenters Union rejected a tentative contract deal. Picket lines were planned Thursday.

However most of the Seattle area’s biggest projects, such as Climate Pledge Arena and Sound Transit light rail construction, have agreements in place preventing a strike.

At those sites, union carpenters will keep working and pay a portion of their wages into a strike fund to support those who walked out. About 2,000 of the union’s roughly 12,000 members work at sites where they can strike, according to the union.

Carpenters say they’re pushing for bigger pay increases to keep up with the cost of living.

The Association of General Contractors of Washington, which represents the carpenters’ employers, says it offered workers a “strong package” of pay raises.

According to the union, a journey-level member currently makes about $1,877 a week, and that pay would have incrementally increased during the next four years by a total of $376, or $9.40 per hour.

Union members who rejected the deal are calling for a $15 increase over three years and better parking pay, said Joe Sosa, a carpenter who voted against the latest contract proposal.

Talk to us

More in Northwest

FILE - In this March 14, 2019 file photo, Ethiopian relatives of crash victims mourn at the scene where the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed shortly after takeoff killing all 157 on board, near Bishoftu, south-east of Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia. Relatives of some of the passengers who died in the crash will mark the two-year anniversary of the disaster on Wednesday, March 10, 2021, by seeking a reversal of government orders that let Boeing 737 Max jets fly again.  (AP Photo/Mulugeta Ayene, File)
Boeing pilot involved in Max testing is indicted in Texas

He’s accused of giving the FAA false information about systems that played a role in two deadly crashes.

Seattle Seahawks fans during an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021, in Seattle. The Los Angeles Rams won 26-17. (AP Photo/Ben VanHouten)
Vaccine proof or negative test soon required at large events

Gov. Jay Inslee announced the new order, which goes into effect Nov. 15.

In this Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, photo, James Gleeson, a surveyor with the Washington State Department of Transportation, takes measurements from the shoulder of Interstate 82 to monitor a slow-moving landslide on Rattlesnake Ridge beyond in Union Gap, Wash. Large containers line a road below the ridge, an effort to help block rocks and debris from reaching the highway. The threat has forced evacuations as officials prepare for what they say is inevitable – the collapse of the ridge near the interstate highway that experts say should occur sometime from late January or early February. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Yakima County landslide slows down to 2 inches per week

Scientists have been monitoring the Rattlesnake Ridge slide near Union Gap since 2017.

FILE - In this Wednesday, March 18, 2020 file photo, truck traffic from Canada waits to cross the border into the United States in Derby Line Vt. The U.S. will reopen its land borders to nonessential travel next month, ending a 19-month freeze due to the COVID-19 pandemic as the country moves to require all international visitors to be vaccinated against the coronavirus. The new rules, to be announced Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021 will allow fully vaccinated foreign nationals to enter the U.S. regardless of the reason for travel (AP Photo/Wilson Ring, File)
US to reopen land borders in November for fully vaccinated

The move ends a 19-month freeze due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Seattle Police officers confer after taking part in a public roll call at Hing Hay Park in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District on March 18. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Seattle police staffing woes prompt emergency dispatch plan

Detectives and non-patrol officers are responding to calls because of a shortage of patrol officers.

FILE - In this Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021 file photo, a nurse loads a syringe with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in Jackson, Miss. Millions of Americans are now eligible to receive a Pfizer booster shot to help increase their protection against the worst effects of the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Washington’s COVID-19 cases down across all age groups

The downturn comes weeks after the state passed a peak of infection driven by the delta variant.

University of Washington campus in spring 2018. (Sue Misao / Herald file)
University of Washington settles DOJ claims of grant fraud

A science/engineering professor is accused of submitting false documentation about research work.

The Boeing 737 Max 10 airplane landing at Boeing Field in Seattle on June 18. (Chona Kasinger / Bloomberg)
Boeing ramps up 737 Max but 787 deliveries are still blocked

Boeing last month maintained its steady trickle of sales as it navigates the aviation downturn.

Bobby Nakihei (right) of Everett, shown with his wife, Diana, died of COVID-19 this month. In 2017 he received a heart and kidney from Justin Elzinga, a 20-year-old Kennewick college student who died unexpectedly. (Family photo) 20211013
Organ donor gave Everett man a new life, until COVID hit

A 20-year-old man’s heart beat inside Bobby Nakihei, 62, of Bobby’s Hawaiian Restaurant in Lynnwood.

FILE - In this March 20, 2020, file photo, the Amazon campus outside the company headquarters in Seattle sits nearly deserted on an otherwise sunny and warm afternoon. Amazon said Monday, Oct. 11, 2021 it will allow many tech and corporate workers to continue working remotely indefinitely, as long as they can commute to the office when necessary. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
Amazon to allow employees to work remotely indefinitely

Although most cannot work remotely because their duties include grabbing orders and delivering them.

Inslee: No ‘massive disruptions’ as worker vax rates hit 90%

A surge in vaccinations has eased concern about service slowdowns ahead of a Monday deadline.

A poster with information on slain Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Wales is displayed during a news conference giving an update on the unsolved 2001 slaying of Wales, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018, in Seattle. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein joined other officials to discuss the killing of Wales, an 18-year veteran of the U.S. Attorney's Office in Seattle who was shot as he worked in the basement of his home on Oct. 11, 2001. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
$2.5 million reward to solve prosecutor’s killing in Seattle

Thomas Wales, who was shot to death 20 years ago, was a veteran of the U.S. attorney’s office.