Sunday, November 4, 2007

Press Release

Machinists Ratify Space Center Contract

Cape Canaveral, FL, October 4, 2007 – Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) Local 2061 today ratified a new collective bargaining agreement with United Space Alliance (USA), ending a four-month strike by nearly 500 workers at Kennedy Space Center.

The IAM was able to protect and increase pensions for current members by increasing the dollar per month multiplier and extending the retroactivity period for the new multipliers to an earlier date. The IAM also secured retirement benefits for new hires. Both issues were primary goals throughout the strike and during negotiations.

"The addition of the IAM 401(k) into this contract will be VERY important for our future new hires," said Union spokesman Bob Wood "The IAM has 12 contracts at the Space Center with the defined-benefit IAM Pension Plan, and the 401(k) can be rolled into the IAM Pension Plan at any of those locations."

The General Wage Package was also modified and calls for flat rate increases rather than percentage raises. Members will receive $1.00 the first year and seventy-five cents the second and third year. This formula provides for a more equitable distribution of raises among all members.

“It is our belief that the political action by our International, support of key democrats in the House of Representatives, including those on the NASA oversight committees, prompted a return to the bargaining table,” said Wood. “The assistance of specially appointed Federal Mediator was also instrumental in bringing us where we are today.”

“While United Space Alliance has said this is the best contract they’ve ever offered, the problem remains that this contract offer is still substandard to many of the other contracts the IAM has at Kennedy Space Center,” said Wood. “A full defined-benefit pension plan for all workers has been the standard and continues to be our long-term goal.”

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO, CLC, is one of the nation's largest trade unions, representing more than 720,000 active and retired members. For additional information about the IAM, visit their website at