LOS ANGELES Boeing
Co.s largest white-collar union has proposed a new
four-year contract with the company that it said would end the
"distraction" of stalled labor negotiations and allow the
aerospace giant to "focus" on issues with its new 787
As Boeing continued to grapple
this week with problems that resulted in the grounding of its
787s, the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in
Aerospace (SPEEA) presented its "best and final" contract offer
to the company when the two sides resumed negotiations after a
"Were making this proposal
so that we can be done with contract negotiations, get an
agreement acceptable to both sides and ... eliminate this
distraction and focus on the needs of the 787 program," a
spokesman for SPEEA told AMM.
A Boeing spokesman couldnt
be reached for comment.
More than 23,000 engineers and
technicians who are members of SPEEAprimarily employees
at Boeings facilities in the Pacific Northwesthave
been working without a contract since the expiration of their
previous four-year agreements last November.
The SPEEA spokesman said that
the union would accept the same 5-percent annual wage increases
for its members included in its previous four-year contract,
lower than what the union earlier wanted. This would avoid a
two-tier pay system between professional and technical
employees sought by the company.
Moreover, the SPEEA has proposed
adopting the same pension scheme that Chicago-based Boeing
negotiated in late 2011 with the International Association of
Machinists and Aerospace Workers union. This would preserve
defined pensions for all union members instead of eliminating
them for new hires, as the company had offered.
"With our contracts put to rest,
we can all roll up our sleeves and work the issues facing the
787 and Boeing," Sandy Hastings, a member of the SPEEA
negotiating team representing technical workers, said in a