Wroblewski: No ‘secret talks’

A Seattle Times story describing “deadlocked secret talks” between Boeing Co. executives and leaders of the International Association of Machinists has caused “unnecessary anxiety for our Members, their familes and the community at large,” District 751 President Tom Wroblewski said today.Tomportrait

“There are no ‘secret talks,'” he said, “just the ongoing discussions on a variety of topics, which the Union has continually reported to our members and the public.”

Back in August, for example, Wroblewski told Members that “we are working to improve our relationship with Boeing,” and he promised to “keep talking to the Company, looking for common ground.” And in July, he issued a letter saying he was “open to talking about anything that will bring more jobs for our membership, and if Boeing has proposals that would ensure we’ll be building Boeing airplanes here in Puget Sound for generations to come, we’ll certainly listen.”

Those discussions have touched on a wide range of topics that concern Machinists who work at Boeing, Wroblewski said in a statement released Thursday. They include:

  • Jobs,
  • Boeing’s proposed second 787 line,
  • Boeing’s eventual replacement for the 737, and
  • Bringing more Boeing work back in-house.

Wroblewski said it would “be irresponsible of us not to engage the Boeing Co. in discussion on these important issues.” But to have “uninformed media sources speculating on these meetings” is “neither productive nor helpful,” he added.

Boeing and the Machinists have a four-year contract in place, and “if these ongoing discussions produce anything outside of the current contract language, it will be brought to the membership and voted on,” Wroblewski said. “Our Members have the final say.”

Boeing CEO Jim McNerney acknowledged the discussions Wednesday, when discussing the Company’s third-quarter earnings statement with reporters. McNerney described the talks as  “constructive” and “occurring on a regular basis.”

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