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We want to thank James Baker for his donations to the strike and taking care of our members on the line.
Also, we've recieved the following donations from IAM Locals:
$5,000 - IAM LL 2228, Sunnyvale, CA
$100 - IAM Old Pueblo Lodge 933, Tuscon, AZ
$25 - IAM LL 1992, Hutchinson, KS
$300 - IAM W-2, Memphis, TN
$200 - IAM LL 2231, Sunnyvale, FL
$50 - IAM LL 1255, Amarillo, TX
$100 - IAM DL 837, St. Louis, MO
$102 - IAM LL 1569, Geneva, NE
$50 - IAM LL 165, Roanoke, VA
$50 - IAM LL 1486, Washington, DC
$100 - IAM LL 40, Fernandina Beach, FL
$25 - IAM LL 1632, Napier Field, AL
$20 - IAM LL 162, Cincinnati, OH
$25 - IAM LL 733, Wichita, KS
$100 - IAM LL 2008, Posen, IL
$100 - IAM LL 2413, Mississauga, ON (Canada)
Thanks to our IAM Brothers and Sisters for their support.
Your IAM negotiators have been invited by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services (FMCS) to meet with Lockheed Martin and Federal Mediators for mediated bargaining sessions to explore settlement possibilities of our strike.
You can learn more about FMCS on their website, fmcs.gov. They are a government agency that functions as a third-party neutral agent.
As part of our agreement to meet, FMCS mediators have asked both sides to not make any public statements during the mediation process. Our Negotiating Committee has been proud of our open and transparent bargaining during our negotiations prior to the strike, and we have worked hard to be as informative as possible during our strike.
Your Negotiating Committee and involved IAM staff will comply with this agreement and therefore we will be unable to give you regular updates during these mediation sessions. Once mediation starts, we will be meeting continually until an agreement is reached, or talks break down.
As there will be no updates on the sessions until they are concluded, anything you hear will be rumors and should be discounted. Only those at the table will know what’s really going on, and they won’t be talking. All rumors, including those coming from Lockheed Martin management, will be self-serving and completely unreliable.
We will post on the breaking news area of the website that we are in mediation, and it will be changed as soon mediation ends, and we will then give you the results of that process.
As we’ve said all along, you our members are our strength. Nine weeks into our strike, less than 10 percent of the bargaining unit workforce has crossed the picket line here in Ft. Worth, and all of those who have stood together should be very proud. We ask that you continue to stand together, and stand with your Negotiating Committee as you have throughout this strike.
These mediated bargaining sessions will address the issues which caused this strike. We will continue to address those issues with the intent to resolve them. Should this process not be successful and those issues remain unresolved, we may have to continue to express our determination to Lockheed that their offer is still unacceptable to the over 90% of membership on our side of the picket line.
Thank you for your Solidarity. Your Negotiating Committee and the entire IAM is proud of you. You are what makes The Fighting Machinists strong.
The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) today accepted an invitation from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) to meet with Lockheed Martin and federal mediators in Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX to explore settlement possibilities for the strike that began on April 23, 2012.
“The IAM welcomes the involvement of federal mediators and we’re looking forward to the face-to-face meetings with Lockheed,” said IAM Aerospace General Vice President Mark Blondin. “While there remains no shortage of resolve on both sides of this dispute, we’re hopeful the FMCS can provide the independent perspective that often produces the framework for a resolution.”
Members of the District 776 Negotiating Committee will be joined by representatives from IAM headquarters for the mediated bargaining sessions, which will commence on June 20. To provide every chance for the meetings to be successful, all sides have agreed to withhold public statements until the sessions are concluded.
District 776 members voted in April by a 93 percent margin to reject a contract from Lockheed that barred new hires from participating in the traditional defined benefit pension plan and would switch a majority of Lockheed workers to a high-deductible, high-cost health care plan with no cap on annual out-of-pocket expenses.
District 776 represents more than 3,600 IAM members at Lockheed's facilities in Ft. Worth, TX, Edwards AFB, CA and Pax River NAS, MD.
There was a story about three of the National Labor Relations Board charges in the Star-Telegram today. The story quoted the Regional Director as saying that three of the IAM’s charges were dismissed and had no merit.
We need to set the record clear. A Board representative informed Aerospace Coordinator John Crowdis and Counsel Rod Tanner Wednesday that the Regional Director planned to dismiss the charges, and your leadership requested written dismissal notices explaining the decision when that final decision was made. To date, neither District 776 nor the IAM Southern Regional Office in Arlington has received ANY dismissal notices. We needed the official confirmation of the final decision before we made an announcement.
In any event, the IAM will appeal the dismissal of all three charges to the NLRB Office of Appeals in Washington, D.C. We are confident that upon a full and fair review of the facts and the law, the Regional Directors decision will be reversed in all cases.
We have filed another NLRB charge concerning illegal surveillance by Lockheed Martin.
Recently, Lockheed Martin Chief of Security Sam Alexander contacted one of the Business Representatives and spoke about activity they had videotaped on IAM property. The company has no right to have our property under surveillance and to videotape our union members on our property.
We have had several questions about "termination letters". The company cannot terminate you for striking. That is against the law. Once again, don't listen to the rumors coming out of the plant, most are simply false. If it's not here on our website, it's a rumor! We have addressed the rumors of striker replacement letters here.
As we move forward, we need to remember this question: What is Lockheed's long term plan? If Lockheed prevails, we know what the plan is. They say the military is pushing them to lower costs. Lockheed defends the overhead costs, the layers and layers of management, including their managers they have blogging all day on company time. That’s a perfectly acceptable cost for them. They say they've got 1,700 salaried workers doing our jobs. Obviously the work they were doing wasn't that important, that they can take two months off...
My father is 85 years old. He was an IAM member at GD for 37 years. Although slowing a bit he is still enjoying the benefits he fought for and passed to us. Let's not forget this is what we are fighting for. Our retirement and benefits for the future.
(Click the picture below for a full size version)
Thanks goes out to the volunteers that did such a great job putting together and distributing the donations that came in for the Food Drive which was wonderfully successful. Without the dedication and willingness to create and take this task on in such a fine manner we would not have been able to help so many in the short amount of time that we did.
Teresa Fisher, Lauren Donnell, Melissa Gibbs, Toni Stewart, Beverly Dull, Leeann Hogue, Melanie Singleton, Carol Thistle, Marlene Friol, Thuy Vutang, Belinda Hannah, Tanya Spurlock, Ruth Carrolton, Janet Hoes, and Heather Hardison
From the very beginning, we have pointed out that the fight over pensions wasn’t just about new hires, that it was part of a corporate plan to do away with pensions altogether, including those of people now working at Lockheed and even current retirees. We’ve outlined in our flyers that in future negotiations they would try to freeze the plan, then terminate it and sell it to an insurance company.
Well, an article on the website Pensions and Investments yesterday shows the future if we don’t fight tooth and nail to keep our pension for everyone. From the article:
This is a letter one of our members brought by my office about a week ago.
I am just one of the members of District Lodge 776 which are currently on Strike against Lockheed Martin. I am an Aircraft Assembler and work on the F-35, which we all know is the most technologically advanced Aircraft in the world today, and will be a key component in keeping our Nation secure.
Our dispute is centered on two key issues;
In order to support our Unfair Labor Practice charges against Lockheed Martin and ING, we need to hear from you if you are affected by Lockheed’s actions on the 401(k). If you are having trouble getting a 401(k) loan, or you are affected by the “grace period” for paying back your loan, or having trouble getting a hardship withdrawal, please email our counsel, Rod Tanner, and let him know what you’re dealing with.
All correspondence will be privileged and protected, and your name and information will not be used without your prior consent. We need this as we build the case for our charges.
Please include your name, classification, all contact information and a statement about what issues you have had with ING or Lockheed concerning your 401(k) account and how you’ve been treated. Please provide details.
If you had requested a hardship loan from 2007-2011, or had applied for a 401(k) loan during the 2003 strike, please email Mr. Tanner.
Brothers and Sisters,
It is becoming more and more obvious our strike IS having major effects on Lockheed production. Lockheed stock has dropped like a stone ever since our strike began, and there is undoubtedly a lot of pressure on Lockheed to end the strike. We are hitting them in the pocketbook, and they are now admitting they have made schedule promises that are unlikely they will be able to keep, not just with our government, but with others.