Yokohama, union agree on contract

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The new four-year contract between Yokohama Tire Corp.’s manufacturing plant in Salem, Va., and the United Steelworkers Local 1023 signifies the positive working relationship between the two sides, according to Rex Simpson, vice president of administration for the Fullerton, Calif.-based tire company. Previously, agreements were valid only on a three-year term.

“This is a substantial contract with workable solutions,” Simpson says. “Both sides were professional and cordial throughout negotiations, and both secured some of the changes they sought. When we signed off on the agreement, everyone was comfortable with it. It’s safe to say both sides feel good about the process and the result. Both sides were open and realistic with their expectations given the current state of the economy.”

Contract highlights include a no-closure agreement of the plant during the life of the agreement, an improved cost-of-living structure, the continuation of the union’s current pension plan and safety and health measures.