Here’s What Could Happen if UAW Wins a 4-Day Workweek for Automakers

Here’s What Could Happen if UAW Wins a 4-Day Workweek for Automakers

Here’s What Could Happen if UAW Wins a 4-Day Workweek for Automakers

IAM141.org

+ Show solidarity with UAW

The United Auto Workers (UAW) are currently engaged in a historic, nationwide strike action in pursuit of fair wages and ending the chronic exploitation of American manufacturing workers. Among the workplace improvements the union is seeking may seem far-fetched: a four-day, 32-hour work week. 

However, the idea may not be as radical as it might seem. In fact, more than half of employers in the U.S. have already taken a look at implementing the 4-day work week as part of their policies. Moreover, experts say that giving employees a better work/life balance can improve productivity and increase profits. 

According to a June survey from ResumeBuilder.com, many employers are adopting or considering a four-day workweek. The poll of 976 business leaders found that 20 percent already provide a four-day week for employees. Another 41 percent of respondents said they intend to pilot a four-day schedule soon. In total, a majority of companies surveyed are either implementing or planning a switch to a condensed 32-hour workweek within the coming months and years.

It’s also significant that the United Auto Workers champion the four-day workweek. The five-day workweek itself was born in the same automotive factories that are today marching for a 32-hour week. In other words, it’s not an impossible goal for the UAW to achieve. 

Here are a few ways a UAW win could affect you.

Your Employer Will be More Likely to Give You a 3-day Weekend.

With nearly 150,000 active members, the UAW represents one of the largest groups of workers in the country. If the union succeeds in securing a 32-hour workweek, it would mark the most significant adoption of the shortened schedule to date in the United States. Employers across industries and sectors would be keen to observe the impacts on productivity, worker satisfaction, and company bottom lines. 

The potential effect of the UAW’s innovative proposal means all eyes will be on the outcome – paving the way for other organizations to implement and benefit from 4-day schedules once the 32-hour week is proven effective at such a scale.

Based on the positive outcomes other employers have seen after transitioning to a 4-day week, there are strong indications that the shortened schedule could also work well for automotive companies. Across industries, organizations that have adopted 32-hour weeks report boosted productivity, improved morale, and lower absenteeism alongside unchanged or even increased revenues and profits. With similarly promising results observed across disparate sectors, the auto industry stands to benefit from the 4-day schedule in the same ways. 

If the 4-day week succeeds for automakers, employers everywhere will take notice, meaning your employer will see the benefits such a policy could bring to your workplace. 

Your Employer Could Make More Money, Attract Talent, and Increase Productivity

Most employers that have transitioned to a 4-day workweek report positive impacts. In a survey, 84% of business leaders said the shortened schedule helped their company attract and retain top talent. Additionally, 88% stated the 4-day week positively affected profitability.

Here is one way to rephrase and cite that quote from Max Shek:

According to the survey by ResumeBuilder.com, compressed workweeks lead to higher employee morale, engagement, and efficiency. 

Max Shek, founder of nerDigital, echoes those findings in his company’s experience: “Firstly, employee morale and engagement have significantly improved. Our team members are more motivated, energized, and happier in both their personal and professional lives,” he said. 

“This positive mindset has translated into increased productivity and higher-quality work. Additionally, we have observed that employees are more focused and efficient during their working hours. The compressed work week has encouraged them to streamline processes, eliminate time-wasting activities, and optimize their workflows.” 

Shek’s first-hand account mirrors the broader data – 4-day weeks create happier, more productive teams. 

You Will Not Pay More for Your Next Car. 

Corporate media and the Big Three Automakers are working overtime to scare American consumers by claiming a UAW victory will increase car prices. However, as UAW President Shawn Fain points out, automakers have increased car prices to record levels already without waiting for any increases in labor costs. In fact, sticker prices have reached record highs – while at the same time, wages for factory workers have been suppressed. 

Lower wages do not lead to lower prices for consumers. Instead, they lead to higher profits for companies. According to an analysis by the Economic Policy Institute, the big three American automakers – Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis – saw their profits nearly double over the past decade, totaling $250 billion between 2013 and 2022. Over the most recent UAW contract period, which expired last week, these companies experienced substantial gains, with vehicle prices rising 30% and CEO compensation increasing 40%. However, worker pay only grew 6% over the same 4-year period. The data reveals a grotesque growth in profitability for automotive companies in recent years, while workers have not shared equitably in these gains.

Higher wages and a 32-hour week can easily come from these titanic profits without raising consumer prices. Market competition will also deter any attempt to push higher prices. 

Currently, the UAW is limiting the strikes to factories that produce only a handful of vehicles with good inventories at dealerships. These include Ford Broncos, Rangers, Jeep Wranglers, and GMC Vans production lines.

You Will Not Make Less Money With a Shorter Week

The UAW is asking for three-day weekends to improve work/life balance for factory workers, not because they want to bring home smaller paychecks. Unified workers are calling for a shorter workweek – and pay raises that will replace the money lost with an extra day off. 

Extending family time for UAW members would also require automakers to keep the same 40-hour pay rates and start overtime pay for time at work over 32 hours a week. For the 4-day week to catch on, frontline workers must become advocates for the change. That won’t happen if it includes pay cuts. Workers are more likely to support and advocate for shorter weeks if they don’t face negative financial consequences. Maintaining pay makes a 4-day week more appealing.

More information about how a 4-day week has worked in real-world examples can be found at 4dayweek.com

 

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Here’s What Could Happen if UAW Wins a 4-Day Workweek for Automakers

September 20, 2023

+ Show solidarity with UAW

The United Auto Workers (UAW) are currently engaged in a historic, nationwide strike action in pursuit of fair wages and ending the chronic exploitation of American manufacturing workers. Among the workplace improvements the union is seeking may seem far-fetched: a four-day, 32-hour work week. 

However, the idea may not be as radical as it might seem. In fact, more than half of employers in the U.S. have already taken a look at implementing the 4-day work week as part of their policies. Moreover, experts say that giving employees a better work/life balance can improve productivity and increase profits. 

According to a June survey from ResumeBuilder.com, many employers are adopting or considering a four-day workweek. The poll of 976 business leaders found that 20 percent already provide a four-day week for employees. Another 41 percent of respondents said they intend to pilot a four-day schedule soon. In total, a majority of companies surveyed are either implementing or planning a switch to a condensed 32-hour workweek within the coming months and years.

It’s also significant that the United Auto Workers champion the four-day workweek. The five-day workweek itself was born in the same automotive factories that are today marching for a 32-hour week. In other words, it’s not an impossible goal for the UAW to achieve. 

Here are a few ways a UAW win could affect you.

Your Employer Will be More Likely to Give You a 3-day Weekend.

With nearly 150,000 active members, the UAW represents one of the largest groups of workers in the country. If the union succeeds in securing a 32-hour workweek, it would mark the most significant adoption of the shortened schedule to date in the United States. Employers across industries and sectors would be keen to observe the impacts on productivity, worker satisfaction, and company bottom lines. 

The potential effect of the UAW’s innovative proposal means all eyes will be on the outcome – paving the way for other organizations to implement and benefit from 4-day schedules once the 32-hour week is proven effective at such a scale.

Based on the positive outcomes other employers have seen after transitioning to a 4-day week, there are strong indications that the shortened schedule could also work well for automotive companies. Across industries, organizations that have adopted 32-hour weeks report boosted productivity, improved morale, and lower absenteeism alongside unchanged or even increased revenues and profits. With similarly promising results observed across disparate sectors, the auto industry stands to benefit from the 4-day schedule in the same ways. 

If the 4-day week succeeds for automakers, employers everywhere will take notice, meaning your employer will see the benefits such a policy could bring to your workplace. 

Your Employer Could Make More Money, Attract Talent, and Increase Productivity

Most employers that have transitioned to a 4-day workweek report positive impacts. In a survey, 84% of business leaders said the shortened schedule helped their company attract and retain top talent. Additionally, 88% stated the 4-day week positively affected profitability.

Here is one way to rephrase and cite that quote from Max Shek:

According to the survey by ResumeBuilder.com, compressed workweeks lead to higher employee morale, engagement, and efficiency. 

Max Shek, founder of nerDigital, echoes those findings in his company’s experience: “Firstly, employee morale and engagement have significantly improved. Our team members are more motivated, energized, and happier in both their personal and professional lives,” he said. 

“This positive mindset has translated into increased productivity and higher-quality work. Additionally, we have observed that employees are more focused and efficient during their working hours. The compressed work week has encouraged them to streamline processes, eliminate time-wasting activities, and optimize their workflows.” 

Shek’s first-hand account mirrors the broader data – 4-day weeks create happier, more productive teams. 

You Will Not Pay More for Your Next Car. 

Corporate media and the Big Three Automakers are working overtime to scare American consumers by claiming a UAW victory will increase car prices. However, as UAW President Shawn Fain points out, automakers have increased car prices to record levels already without waiting for any increases in labor costs. In fact, sticker prices have reached record highs – while at the same time, wages for factory workers have been suppressed. 

Lower wages do not lead to lower prices for consumers. Instead, they lead to higher profits for companies. According to an analysis by the Economic Policy Institute, the big three American automakers – Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis – saw their profits nearly double over the past decade, totaling $250 billion between 2013 and 2022. Over the most recent UAW contract period, which expired last week, these companies experienced substantial gains, with vehicle prices rising 30% and CEO compensation increasing 40%. However, worker pay only grew 6% over the same 4-year period. The data reveals a grotesque growth in profitability for automotive companies in recent years, while workers have not shared equitably in these gains.

Higher wages and a 32-hour week can easily come from these titanic profits without raising consumer prices. Market competition will also deter any attempt to push higher prices. 

Currently, the UAW is limiting the strikes to factories that produce only a handful of vehicles with good inventories at dealerships. These include Ford Broncos, Rangers, Jeep Wranglers, and GMC Vans production lines.

You Will Not Make Less Money With a Shorter Week

The UAW is asking for three-day weekends to improve work/life balance for factory workers, not because they want to bring home smaller paychecks. Unified workers are calling for a shorter workweek – and pay raises that will replace the money lost with an extra day off. 

Extending family time for UAW members would also require automakers to keep the same 40-hour pay rates and start overtime pay for time at work over 32 hours a week. For the 4-day week to catch on, frontline workers must become advocates for the change. That won’t happen if it includes pay cuts. Workers are more likely to support and advocate for shorter weeks if they don’t face negative financial consequences. Maintaining pay makes a 4-day week more appealing.

More information about how a 4-day week has worked in real-world examples can be found at 4dayweek.com

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The Wage Debate: Why Better Wages Are Good News for Everyone—Even Workers

The Wage Debate: Why Better Wages Are Good News for Everyone—Even Workers

The Wage Debate: Why Better Wages Are Good News for Everyone—Even Workers

IAM141.org

We live in a society with the dubious honor of boasting a powerful and activist Managerial Class. This class would love little more than to convince a critical mass of working people to accept smaller paychecks. One way they accomplish this goal is to convince working people that they are going broke because they earn too much money. 

It may sound unlikely, but the argument has been instrumental in preventing a raise in the Federal Minimum Wage for the past 14 years, demonstrating both its ability to mislead and its staying power.

Another variant: workers are regularly warned that should their paychecks grow too large, their jobs could be outsourced to some far-flung corner of the world where employees will be less expensive and less impudent.

In recent years, the push for better wages has gained significant momentum, thanks in no small part to the tireless efforts of unions and worker advocates. Yet, a recurring argument persistently challenges this progress: the notion that higher wages inevitably lead to higher consumer prices, hurting the very people the movement aims to help. This argument may seem convincing, but is it grounded in reality?

The Blame Game: Workers as Scapegoats

Workers are being blamed for higher prices and portrayed as harming society through greed. For instance, wait staff are blamed for higher restaurant prices to make patrons angry at other members of the same working class instead of the owners and their endless quest for profits. 

There’s no universe in which profiteers will ever have enough money. Therefore, price hikes are inevitable and not caused by higher wages; they will always charge as much for their products as possible.

At the same time, workers are threatened by the Managerial Class with a lose-lose proposition: keep asking for more money, and we’ll increase the prices you pay for the things you need. This strategy aims to pit workers against each other and deflects attention from the true culprits behind rising costs.

The belief that higher wages harm consumers has been perpetuated to instill fear and division among working people. Far from being detrimental, better wages have been shown to significantly benefit the working class as a whole, creating a ripple effect of positive impacts across society.

So, whether you’re a worker concerned about the implications of wage increases or a consumer wary of price hikes, there’s good news. Better wages are not the enemy we’ve been led to believe. In fact, they could be the hero we’ve all been waiting for.

The Argument Against Wages

According to economic theory, labor costs, which are a part of the marginal cost of production, play a crucial role in setting consumer prices. Economists such as Richard Layard, Stephen Nickell, and Richard Jackman have argued that higher wages require higher consumer prices. Increased prices, they claim, neutralize the higher wages.

“…when buoyant demand reduces unemployment (at least relative to recent experienced levels), inflationary pressure develops. Firms start bidding against each other for labour, and workers feel more confident in pressing wage claims. If the inflationary pressure is too great, inflation starts spiraling upwards: higher wages lead to higher price rises, leading to still higher wage rises, and so on. This is the wage-price spiral.”

  •  Richard Layard, Stephen Nickell, and Richard Jackman, The unemployment crisis

This isn’t an argument for lower consumer prices, as it pretends to be. This is an argument against the very concept of wages. 

Effectively, the argument asks us to believe that lower wages are in the best interests of working people. If workers get paid less, they will enjoy more money since the prices they pay for goods and services are lower. 

Companies have various methods to absorb the increased labor costs that don’t involve raising prices, such as improving operational efficiencies or accepting slightly lower profit margins. 

The “wage-price spiral” argument is essentially circular reasoning. It assumes that higher wages will automatically lead to higher prices, which will then cause ever higher wages, and so on. It ignores completely the existence of self-correcting mechanisms in an economy, like increased supply or reduced demand, which can break the cycle. It also uses a slippery slope fallacy by implying that any wage increase will inevitably lead to runaway inflation. This also ignores vast empirical evidence that moderate wage increases have not led to uncontrollable inflation.

Wages Now vs. Wages Later

Firstly, the fear of higher prices is often predicated on the wages workers earn now, not the wages they would make after a raise. This is a crucial oversight. A significant wage increase could easily offset a modest increase in the cost of living. For example, a 10% increase in wages coupled with a 2% increase in the cost of goods still leaves the worker 8% better off.

Anti-union managers often employ similar reasoning to dissuade non-union workers from organizing. They raise the specter of unaffordable union dues as a deterrent, attempting to scare workers away from the benefits of collective bargaining. This argument is a variant of the anti-wage increase argument and is equally flawed for similar reasons.

Just as workers might fear higher prices based on their current wages rather than potential higher wages, non-union workers often calculate the cost of union dues against their current, lower wages. They’re not considering what they would be making if they were part of a union, which often includes higher wages, better benefits, job security, and improved working conditions.

By focusing on the immediate cost of union dues without considering the broader financial and social benefits of union membership, workers are making an incomplete assessment that only serves the interests of anti-union managers. It’s a fear tactic designed to maintain the status quo, keeping workers disempowered and wages low.

Like the argument against wage increases, the union dues fear tactic is a form of economic manipulation that seeks to keep workers in a state of uncertainty and apprehension, preventing them from taking steps that would improve their lives both financially and socially.

The truth is that the belief that higher wages harm consumers has been perpetuated to instill fear and division among working people. Far from being detrimental, better wages have been shown to significantly benefit the working class as a whole, creating a ripple effect of positive impacts across society.

In other words, when it comes to wages, sometimes more is more. 

+ Read the full report HERE

 

 

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The Wage Debate: Why Better Wages Are Good News for Everyone—Even Workers

August 29, 2023

We live in a society with the dubious honor of boasting a powerful and activist Managerial Class. This class would love little more than to convince a critical mass of working people to accept smaller paychecks. One way they accomplish this goal is to convince working people that they are going broke because they earn too much money. 

It may sound unlikely, but the argument has been instrumental in preventing a raise in the Federal Minimum Wage for the past 14 years, demonstrating both its ability to mislead and its staying power.

Another variant: workers are regularly warned that should their paychecks grow too large, their jobs could be outsourced to some far-flung corner of the world where employees will be less expensive and less impudent.

In recent years, the push for better wages has gained significant momentum, thanks in no small part to the tireless efforts of unions and worker advocates. Yet, a recurring argument persistently challenges this progress: the notion that higher wages inevitably lead to higher consumer prices, hurting the very people the movement aims to help. This argument may seem convincing, but is it grounded in reality?

The Blame Game: Workers as Scapegoats

Workers are being blamed for higher prices and portrayed as harming society through greed. For instance, wait staff are blamed for higher restaurant prices to make patrons angry at other members of the same working class instead of the owners and their endless quest for profits. 

There’s no universe in which profiteers will ever have enough money. Therefore, price hikes are inevitable and not caused by higher wages; they will always charge as much for their products as possible.

At the same time, workers are threatened by the Managerial Class with a lose-lose proposition: keep asking for more money, and we’ll increase the prices you pay for the things you need. This strategy aims to pit workers against each other and deflects attention from the true culprits behind rising costs.

The belief that higher wages harm consumers has been perpetuated to instill fear and division among working people. Far from being detrimental, better wages have been shown to significantly benefit the working class as a whole, creating a ripple effect of positive impacts across society.

So, whether you’re a worker concerned about the implications of wage increases or a consumer wary of price hikes, there’s good news. Better wages are not the enemy we’ve been led to believe. In fact, they could be the hero we’ve all been waiting for.

The Argument Against Wages

According to economic theory, labor costs, which are a part of the marginal cost of production, play a crucial role in setting consumer prices. Economists such as Richard Layard, Stephen Nickell, and Richard Jackman have argued that higher wages require higher consumer prices. Increased prices, they claim, neutralize the higher wages.

“…when buoyant demand reduces unemployment (at least relative to recent experienced levels), inflationary pressure develops. Firms start bidding against each other for labour, and workers feel more confident in pressing wage claims. If the inflationary pressure is too great, inflation starts spiraling upwards: higher wages lead to higher price rises, leading to still higher wage rises, and so on. This is the wage-price spiral.”

  •  Richard Layard, Stephen Nickell, and Richard Jackman, The unemployment crisis

This isn’t an argument for lower consumer prices, as it pretends to be. This is an argument against the very concept of wages. 

Effectively, the argument asks us to believe that lower wages are in the best interests of working people. If workers get paid less, they will enjoy more money since the prices they pay for goods and services are lower. 

Companies have various methods to absorb the increased labor costs that don’t involve raising prices, such as improving operational efficiencies or accepting slightly lower profit margins. 

The “wage-price spiral” argument is essentially circular reasoning. It assumes that higher wages will automatically lead to higher prices, which will then cause ever higher wages, and so on. It ignores completely the existence of self-correcting mechanisms in an economy, like increased supply or reduced demand, which can break the cycle. It also uses a slippery slope fallacy by implying that any wage increase will inevitably lead to runaway inflation. This also ignores vast empirical evidence that moderate wage increases have not led to uncontrollable inflation.

Wages Now vs. Wages Later

Firstly, the fear of higher prices is often predicated on the wages workers earn now, not the wages they would make after a raise. This is a crucial oversight. A significant wage increase could easily offset a modest increase in the cost of living. For example, a 10% increase in wages coupled with a 2% increase in the cost of goods still leaves the worker 8% better off.

Anti-union managers often employ similar reasoning to dissuade non-union workers from organizing. They raise the specter of unaffordable union dues as a deterrent, attempting to scare workers away from the benefits of collective bargaining. This argument is a variant of the anti-wage increase argument and is equally flawed for similar reasons.

Just as workers might fear higher prices based on their current wages rather than potential higher wages, non-union workers often calculate the cost of union dues against their current, lower wages. They’re not considering what they would be making if they were part of a union, which often includes higher wages, better benefits, job security, and improved working conditions.

By focusing on the immediate cost of union dues without considering the broader financial and social benefits of union membership, workers are making an incomplete assessment that only serves the interests of anti-union managers. It’s a fear tactic designed to maintain the status quo, keeping workers disempowered and wages low.

Like the argument against wage increases, the union dues fear tactic is a form of economic manipulation that seeks to keep workers in a state of uncertainty and apprehension, preventing them from taking steps that would improve their lives both financially and socially.

The truth is that the belief that higher wages harm consumers has been perpetuated to instill fear and division among working people. Far from being detrimental, better wages have been shown to significantly benefit the working class as a whole, creating a ripple effect of positive impacts across society.

In other words, when it comes to wages, sometimes more is more. 

+ Read the full report HERE

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Largest Non-Strike Rally in Airline History

Largest Non-Strike Rally in Airline History

Largest Non-Strike Rally in Airline History

IAM141.org

HOUSTON – The largest non-strike rally in the history of commercial aviation took place on Friday. Thousands of airline workers from five different Unions joined forces at ten airports to call attention to foot-dragging by United Airlines in ongoing contract talks with the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA).

According to estimates from ALPA Spokesman Captain Michael Williams, about 3,000 Pilots participated in the rallies, representing about 20% of the 15,000 Pilots at the carrier. Over 400 Pilots, Fleet and Passenger Service, Mechanics and other workgroups attended one rally in Houston.

Pilots at United have been working without a raise for over four years while contract talks seem all but stalled.

According to Williams, the protracted negotiations have left Pilots at United all but last in line among workgroups at the carrier. He also stressed that the longer Pilots go without an updated agreement, the longer the airline will be at a competitive disadvantage as it attempts to attract new pilots.

“United management’s vision of “United Next” cannot happen without a Contract First,” he told a group of media outlets and reporters covering the Houston event.

The demonstrations are happening just before what could be a record-breaking but nightmarish summer travel season.

This summer is expected to be among the most frustrating for air travelers since airlines were deregulated in 1978. Airlines are raising fares, overselling flights, and lacking critical staff to load and unload passengers and baggage onto planes. According to industry watchers, airlines are struggling to keep up with the post-pandemic surge in demand. The staff shortage is already causing flight cancellations and delays, notably Southwest, whose Christmas meltdown saw thousands of cancellations and delays and cost the carrier more than $500 million.

The leader of the United Airlines Pilots’ Union, Garth Thompson, said in a recent interview that the airline is refusing to match new benchmark pay rates for the aviation industry.

They also want their new contract to have equal or better work-life balance. He said that any proposal from the airline that does not meet these expectations will not be ratified.

In March, the Airline Pilots Association (ALPA) negotiated a massive 34% pay increase at Delta Air Lines, improving wages and benefits by $7 billion. The deal helps to establish Delta as a more attractive employer amid a nationwide pilot shortage.

“We expect our contract to raise the bar from Delta’s contract,” Thompson said in an interview with Reuters this week. “We’re not just looking for more money, we’re looking for several areas of improvement that we’ve been waiting a long time to achieve.”

The Union stated that a tentative contract proposed last year failed to meet the minimum requirements of Pilots, resulting in an overwhelming rejection by the Union.

United Airlines is touting an optimistic growth plan called “United Next.” However, the pilot group is pointing out that without an industry-leading agreement, management won’t be able to expand in the way they want unless the company can hire and retain the best pilots. The failed deal and a new high bar at other properties have unified the pilot group.

“We’ve all heard of or witnessed United executives claiming they’re ready to conclude negotiations toward an industry-leading agreement,” Thompson said. “Having noted the increasing boldness and frequency of their assertions, it’s time for them to prove the extent of their sincerity.”

Thompson noted the increasing boldness and frequency of their assertions and said that it was time for them to prove the extent of their sincerity.

In addition to ALPA, the rallies were attended by The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Professional Airline Flight Control Association (PAFA), and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

Members of IAMAW Locals 811 and 2198 pose for a group photo following a rally that drew over 400 Union Members near Bush Intercontinental Airport. The rally was one of ten held at major airports around the nation. 

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Largest Non-Strike Rally in Airline History

MAY 12, 2023

HOUSTON – The largest non-strike rally in the history of commercial aviation took place on Friday. Thousands of airline workers from five different Unions joined forces at ten airports to call attention to foot-dragging by United Airlines in ongoing contract talks with the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA).

According to estimates from ALPA Spokesman Captain Michael Williams, about 3,000 Pilots participated in the rallies, representing about 20% of the 15,000 Pilots at the carrier. Over 400 Pilots, Fleet and Passenger Service, Mechanics and other workgroups attended one rally in Houston.

Pilots at United have been working without a raise for over four years while contract talks seem all but stalled.

According to Williams, the protracted negotiations have left Pilots at United all but last in line among workgroups at the carrier. He also stressed that the longer Pilots go without an updated agreement, the longer the airline will be at a competitive disadvantage as it attempts to attract new pilots.

“United management’s vision of “United Next” cannot happen without a Contract First,” he told a group of media outlets and reporters covering the Houston event.

The demonstrations are happening just before what could be a record-breaking but nightmarish summer travel season.

This summer is expected to be among the most frustrating for air travelers since airlines were deregulated in 1978. Airlines are raising fares, overselling flights, and lacking critical staff to load and unload passengers and baggage onto planes. According to industry watchers, airlines are struggling to keep up with the post-pandemic surge in demand. The staff shortage is already causing flight cancellations and delays, notably Southwest, whose Christmas meltdown saw thousands of cancellations and delays and cost the carrier more than $500 million.

The leader of the United Airlines Pilots’ Union, Garth Thompson, said in a recent interview that the airline is refusing to match new benchmark pay rates for the aviation industry.

They also want their new contract to have equal or better work-life balance. He said that any proposal from the airline that does not meet these expectations will not be ratified.

In March, the Airline Pilots Association (ALPA) negotiated a massive 34% pay increase at Delta Air Lines, improving wages and benefits by $7 billion. The deal helps to establish Delta as a more attractive employer amid a nationwide pilot shortage.

“We expect our contract to raise the bar from Delta’s contract,” Thompson said in an interview with Reuters this week. “We’re not just looking for more money, we’re looking for several areas of improvement that we’ve been waiting a long time to achieve.”

The Union stated that a tentative contract proposed last year failed to meet the minimum requirements of Pilots, resulting in an overwhelming rejection by the Union.

United Airlines is touting an optimistic growth plan called “United Next.” However, the pilot group is pointing out that without an industry-leading agreement, management won’t be able to expand in the way they want unless the company can hire and retain the best pilots. The failed deal and a new high bar at other properties have unified the pilot group.

“We’ve all heard of or witnessed United executives claiming they’re ready to conclude negotiations toward an industry-leading agreement,” Thompson said. “Having noted the increasing boldness and frequency of their assertions, it’s time for them to prove the extent of their sincerity.”

Thompson noted the increasing boldness and frequency of their assertions and said that it was time for them to prove the extent of their sincerity.

In addition to ALPA, the rallies were attended by The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Professional Airline Flight Control Association (PAFA), and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

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The Battle for a First Contract: How Employers Use Unfair Labor Practices

The Battle for a First Contract: How Employers Use Unfair Labor Practices

The Battle for a First Contract: How Employers Use Unfair Labor Practices

IAM141.org

Recent victories in organizing workers at companies such as Amazon, Starbucks, and Trader Joe’s indicate that it is possible for workers in industries previously thought to be impossible to unify. 

However, even when unions are formed, they often do not reach legally binding agreements with employers that would give workers more control over their pay, benefits, and protections. 

New research from the ILR School at Cornell University shows that when employers commit unfair labor practices to impede contract negotiations, the chances of winning a first contract within 18 months of voting to form a union decrease by about 71%. 

The study, titled “Breaking the deadlock: How union and employer tactics affect first contract achievement,” was published in the Industrial Relations Journal on February 25 and co-authored by ILR Ph.D. students Johnnie Kallas and Dongwoo Park and the University of Windsor Assistant Professor Rachel Aleks. According to Kallas, many people assume that winning a union election means being able to negotiate a contract readily. Still, in reality, less than half of unions have an agreement one year after an election. This is because nothing in U.S. labor law requires an employer to reach an agreement on a first contract within a given timeframe. Unethical employers can prolong labor talks for years.

According to the National Labor Relations Board, the National Labor Relations Act gives employees the right to bargain collectively with their employer through a representative they and their coworkers choose. The union and employer must bargain in good faith about wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment until they agree on a labor contract or reach a stand-off or “impasse.” However, an employer is not legally required to reach an agreement on a first contract within the timeframe union members ask for.

The National Labor Relation Board is the Federal agency that regulates unions outside the transportation sector. Railroads and Airlines are regulated by another agency called the National Mediation Board.

Employer opposition can have a negative impact on unions achieving a first contract, with many engaging in illegal tactics such as spreading rumors about job loss and plant closings. Employers also use other unethical means, such as captive audience meetings, to delay the process. In 39% of cases, employers retained the use of an anti-union consultant.

According to a recent article from Bloomberg Law, the time it takes to negotiate a first contract with a union has increased from an average of 409 days to now an average of 465 days – or well over one year. A typical airline contract takes an average of 4 years to fully negotiate.

However, it is important to note that this is an average, and the actual time it takes to negotiate a first contract can vary depending on various factors such as the industry or sector in which the negotiations are occurring.

Unfortunately, some employers may choose to ignore labor laws altogether. This can result in HR policy blunders and expensive lawsuits filed on behalf of employees who feel that they have been wrongedLaws regarding employees are constantly changing at local, state, and federal levels, and it is essential for managers and personnel in human resources to stay up-to-date on these changes.

According to UnionTrack, workers at St. Charles Medical Center in central Oregon voted to unionize in 2019 and began the long process of bargaining their first contract. However, after hitting roadblocks and inequitable proposals from St. Charles management, the workers voted by 94% to strike. This began a historic nine-day strike, which brought in mass support across Oregon from political leaders, unions, faith, and community organizations. After months of stalling, this strike brought St. Charles back to the table with workable proposals, and the strike gave way to intensive bargaining sessions where a final agreement was reached. The medical techs, technologists, and therapists at St. Charles Medical Center have now ratified their first union contract.

Employees have several options to protect themselves and hold employers accountable when they violate labor laws. One option is to report unsafe working conditions to the government agency that regulates their workplaceEmployees can also file individual lawsuits against employers for employment law violations. Additionally, employees are protected by a variety of federal and state laws, including the National Labor Relations Act and statutes overseen by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which protect employees from hostile work environments, discrimination, and unfair labor practices. It is important for employees to be aware of their rights and to take action if they believe their employer has violated labor laws.

 

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The Battle for a First Contract: How Employers Use Unfair Labor Practices

April 26, 2023

Recent victories in organizing workers at companies such as Amazon, Starbucks, and Trader Joe’s indicate that it is possible for workers in industries previously thought to be impossible to unify. 

However, even when unions are formed, they often do not reach legally binding agreements with employers that would give workers more control over their pay, benefits, and protections. 

New research from the ILR School at Cornell University shows that when employers commit unfair labor practices to impede contract negotiations, the chances of winning a first contract within 18 months of voting to form a union decrease by about 71%. 

The study, titled “Breaking the deadlock: How union and employer tactics affect first contract achievement,” was published in the Industrial Relations Journal on February 25 and co-authored by ILR Ph.D. students Johnnie Kallas and Dongwoo Park and the University of Windsor Assistant Professor Rachel Aleks. According to Kallas, many people assume that winning a union election means being able to negotiate a contract readily. Still, in reality, less than half of unions have an agreement one year after an election. This is because nothing in U.S. labor law requires an employer to reach an agreement on a first contract within a given timeframe. Unethical employers can prolong labor talks for years.

According to the National Labor Relations Board, the National Labor Relations Act gives employees the right to bargain collectively with their employer through a representative they and their coworkers choose. The union and employer must bargain in good faith about wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment until they agree on a labor contract or reach a stand-off or “impasse.” However, an employer is not legally required to reach an agreement on a first contract within the timeframe union members ask for.

The National Labor Relation Board is the Federal agency that regulates unions outside the transportation sector. Railroads and Airlines are regulated by another agency called the National Mediation Board.

Employer opposition can have a negative impact on unions achieving a first contract, with many engaging in illegal tactics such as spreading rumors about job loss and plant closings. Employers also use other unethical means, such as captive audience meetings, to delay the process. In 39% of cases, employers retained the use of an anti-union consultant.

According to a recent article from Bloomberg Law, the time it takes to negotiate a first contract with a union has increased from an average of 409 days to now an average of 465 days – or well over one year. A typical airline contract takes an average of 4 years to fully negotiate.

However, it is important to note that this is an average, and the actual time it takes to negotiate a first contract can vary depending on various factors such as the industry or sector in which the negotiations are occurring.

Unfortunately, some employers may choose to ignore labor laws altogether. This can result in HR policy blunders and expensive lawsuits filed on behalf of employees who feel that they have been wrongedLaws regarding employees are constantly changing at local, state, and federal levels, and it is essential for managers and personnel in human resources to stay up-to-date on these changes.

According to UnionTrack, workers at St. Charles Medical Center in central Oregon voted to unionize in 2019 and began the long process of bargaining their first contract. However, after hitting roadblocks and inequitable proposals from St. Charles management, the workers voted by 94% to strike. This began a historic nine-day strike, which brought in mass support across Oregon from political leaders, unions, faith, and community organizations. After months of stalling, this strike brought St. Charles back to the table with workable proposals, and the strike gave way to intensive bargaining sessions where a final agreement was reached. The medical techs, technologists, and therapists at St. Charles Medical Center have now ratified their first union contract.

Employees have several options to protect themselves and hold employers accountable when they violate labor laws. One option is to report unsafe working conditions to the government agency that regulates their workplaceEmployees can also file individual lawsuits against employers for employment law violations. Additionally, employees are protected by a variety of federal and state laws, including the National Labor Relations Act and statutes overseen by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which protect employees from hostile work environments, discrimination, and unfair labor practices. It is important for employees to be aware of their rights and to take action if they believe their employer has violated labor laws.

 

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IAM and United Airlines Tentative Agreements Provide Immediate Benefits

IAM and United Airlines Tentative Agreements Provide Immediate Benefits

IAM and United Airlines Tentative Agreements Provide Immediate Benefits

IAM141.org

United Airlines and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) union have reached tentative agreements covering seven separate workgroups, including fleet service workers, passenger service workers, storekeepers, central load planners, maintenance instructors, fleet technical instructors, and security officers. 

These agreements are intended to provide workplace improvements for covered union members while more comprehensive agreements are negotiated. Union negotiators will begin preparing for new rounds of contract talks in the next few months.

The agreements will provide the highest overall compensation for every covered workgroup and extend outsourcing protections for 17 stations. The deals will extend “no furlough” rules for employees, based on seniority, by twenty years, to June 2019.

The tentative agreements will also include a Ratification bonus for the union, giving members $110 for each year with the company. If ratified, the union will see job protections and pay to improve immediately on the ratification date. The union will also get a $45 million Ratification bonus, which will begin going out in the first pay period after ratification.

“The new agreements will provide immediate job protections and pay increases for our members,” said Mike Klemm, the IAM Union’s District President who helped lead the negotiations. “The Ratification bonus will give our union a significant boost and recognize our members’ years of service to the company.”

The IAM union has been negotiating with United Airlines since 2019, but talks were put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Negotiations resumed in December 2022 and concluded earlier this month. 

Union Members in good standing will begin ratification votes on all the agreements on April 24 by electronic ballot. The voting period will last until May 1 at 6:00 pm, when all votes will be tallied. 

Local committees are holding informational town hall and break room meetings at airports nationwide, explaining how the agreements will impact each workgroup. A list of dates for the sessions has been published online.

If ratified, the agreements will position United Airlines to outcompete other airlines in a tight labor market by increasing lead pay by $3/hour and boosting wages in some cases to over $40/hour. They will also insource work at 17 airports nationwide and prevent outsourcing for more employees.

The IAM union’s announcement of the tentative agreements is a welcome development for United Airlines, which has faced uncertainty in recent years due to labor disputes and financial challenges. With these agreements, United Airlines is positioning itself to remain competitive in the airline industry and retain its workforce in a tight labor market.

The announcement also has implications for other airlines in the industry, particularly those that may be facing negotiations with the Machinists Union in the near future. If ratified, these agreements could set industry standards for compensation and job security, making it more difficult for other airlines to compete for workers in a tight labor market.

 

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IAM and United Airlines Tentative Agreements Provide Immediate Benefits

April 17, 2023

United Airlines and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) union have reached tentative agreements covering seven separate workgroups, including fleet service workers, passenger service workers, storekeepers, central load planners, maintenance instructors, fleet technical instructors, and security officers. 

These agreements are intended to provide workplace improvements for covered union members while more comprehensive agreements are negotiated. Union negotiators will begin preparing for new rounds of contract talks in the next few months.

The agreements will provide the highest overall compensation for every covered workgroup and extend outsourcing protections for 17 stations. The deals will extend “no furlough” rules for employees, based on seniority, by twenty years, to June 2019.

The tentative agreements will also include a Ratification bonus for the union, giving members $110 for each year with the company. If ratified, the union will see job protections and pay to improve immediately on the ratification date. The union will also get a $45 million Ratification bonus, which will begin going out in the first pay period after ratification.

“The new agreements will provide immediate job protections and pay increases for our members,” said Mike Klemm, the IAM Union’s District President who helped lead the negotiations. “The Ratification bonus will give our union a significant boost and recognize our members’ years of service to the company.”

The IAM union has been negotiating with United Airlines since 2019, but talks were put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Negotiations resumed in December 2022 and concluded earlier this month. 

Union Members in good standing will begin ratification votes on all the agreements on April 24 by electronic ballot. The voting period will last until May 1 at 6:00 pm, when all votes will be tallied. 

Local committees are holding informational town hall and break room meetings at airports nationwide, explaining how the agreements will impact each workgroup. A list of dates for the sessions has been published online.

If ratified, the agreements will position United Airlines to outcompete other airlines in a tight labor market by increasing lead pay by $3/hour and boosting wages in some cases to over $40/hour. They will also insource work at 17 airports nationwide and prevent outsourcing for more employees.

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The announcement also has implications for other airlines in the industry, particularly those that may be facing negotiations with the Machinists Union in the near future. If ratified, these agreements could set industry standards for compensation and job security, making it more difficult for other airlines to compete for workers in a tight labor market.

 

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30,000 Machinists Union Members at United Reach Tentative Agreement

30,000 Machinists Union Members at United Reach Tentative Agreement

30,000 Machinists Union Members at United Reach Tentative Agreement

On March 29, we informed you that we reached an Agreement in Principle (AIP) with United Airlines on seven contracts covering over 29,000 IAM members at United Airlines. We’re happy to inform you that we have transitioned the AIP into a Tentative Agreement (TA) for you to review and vote on.

All changes to the current agreements can be viewed on our website, iam141.org. It is important to note that only changes will appear on the website. If it is not on the website, then the contractual language remains the same as it does today.

All IAM-United grievance committees attended an informational session yesterday, followed by questions and answers in ORD. IAM District Lodge 141 Officers will also visit each location to explain the tentative agreements and answer questions. Please check the website for what day they will be in your station.

Voting will be conducted electronically by BallotPoint Election Services. You will be sent voting instructions with a Personal Identification Number to the address you have on file with the company. The voting period will commence at 00:01 EDT on April 24, 2023, and last through 18:00 EDT on May 1, 2023.

Please call (888) 608-1411 with questions about voting instructions and electronic voting. Feel free to get in touch with your respective Assistant General Chairperson with questions about specific contract language.

In Solidarity,

Your Negotiating Committee
Olu Ajetomobi
Joe Bartz
Victor Hernandez
Barb Martin
Andrea’ Myers
Terry Stansbury
Faysal Silwany
Erik Stenberg
Sue Weisner

Michael G Klemm
President and Directing General Chair,
District 141,
International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers

Recording Secretaries: Please print and post on all IAMAW bulletin Boards.