A seven-week strike of International Truck and Engine Corp. ended Sunday, Dec. 16, as members of the United Auto Workers approved new three-year labor agreements that International says will yield operational flexibility and cost improvements at nine company locations. The contracts, ratified by a majority of UAW members in a vote conducted this past weekend, run until Oct. 1, 2010.
“We expect the new agreements to result in operational and cost improvements at these facilities while maintaining a good quality of life for our employees and retirees,” says Dan Ustian, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Warrenville, Ill.-based Navistar. “This deal represents a positive step forward for these facilities.”
Negotiations between UAW and International opened on Aug. 27. On Oct. 23, UAW called a strike at the nine company locations that are covered by the expired contracts. Customer orders were shifted to International’s other locations for production to be completed.
The UAW represents about 3,700 employees at nine International facilities in Indianapolis (engine assembly and foundry); Melrose Park, Ill. (engine assembly and engine engineering); Springfield, Ohio (truck assembly); Atlanta, York (Pa.) and Dallas (parts distribution centers); and Fort Wayne, Ind. (truck engineering). Total worldwide employment at the company is 16,000.
“Our negotiating team did an outstanding job bringing these talks to a successful close,” said UAW Vice President General Holiefield, who directs the union’s Heavy Trucks Department. “They stood up to the company’s demands and came away with an agreement that protects jobs, wages and healthcare benefits for our membership.”
UAW’s Navistar Policy Committee, made up of bargainers from each of the 11 locals, says it also secured a moratorium on outsourcing, plant closures, spinoffs or sales during the term of the agreement.
“Job security was the top priority for our members at ITE,” said UAW President Ron Gettelfinger. “The bargainers held firm in insisting on these moratoriums that will benefit not only themselves, but also the communities where they live and work. Our team had the support and assistance of the UAW regional directors who service ITE facilities. We are all very pleased with this agreement.”