Machinists at JBLM get better pay and benefits

JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD — Members of Machinists Union District Lodge 751 who work for L-3 Communications at Joint Base Lewis McChord have unanimously ratified a new three-year collective bargaining agreement.

Joint Base Lewis-McChordThe workers are instructors who train U.S. Air Force C-17 pilots and loadmasters.

Under the agreement, they will receive:

  • 3 percent wage increases in 2015, 2016 and 2017;
  • Increases in shift differential pay to 75 cents an hour for second shift and $1 an hour for third shift work;
  • Increases in the amount of cash the company provides to workers in lieu of providing health insurance, and the option for workers to buy supplemental group health, disability and life insurance;
  • Up to $7,500 a year for each full-time employee to reimburse education expenses;
  • Improvements in vacation time and bereavement leave policies; and
  • Improved contract language regarding seniority and layoffs, and a commitment from the company to stabilize hours of work and minimize schedule swings.

“Our members at L-3 had identified pay, group benefits and seniority as their top priorities,” said IAM 751 Business Rep Joe Crockett, who led the union bargaining team “It took some work, but we were able to get all those things in this agreement.”

District 751 represents some 350 civilian employees at JBLM, who work for seven different contractors providing specialized aviation support services for the U.S. military.

“We’ve been able to make some very real gains for defense workers at JBLM, Whidbey Island Naval Air Station and Fairchild Air Force Base,” said District President Jon Holden. “These workers do work that keeps all Americans free, and we’re proud to have them as part of our union.”

Originally formed in 1935 to represent hourly workers at the Boeing Co., District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 33,000 working men and women at 51 employers across Washington and California.

To talk with an IAM 751 officer about how to join the Machinists Union, click here.

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