Talks to continue after JFC Machinists reject offer

TUKWILA – Negotiators are headed back to the bargaining table after Machinists Union members at Jorgensen Forge Co. rejected a proposed three-year contract Thursday.

JFCvote2“Our members at JFC told us we have more work to do,” said Joe Crockett, a business representative for Machinists Union District Lodge 751. “We will meet with the company next week, to get that job started.”

The proposed collective bargaining agreement was rejected by more than half of the eligible voters, and two-thirds of them voted to strike.

Crockett said the union’s team will try to win an improved agreement with the company before discussing any strike or other collective action. In the meantime, the union advised its members to continue reporting to work as usual.

This was the first contract offer for the Jorgensen Forge workers, who voted in August to join District 751. The contract would have covered about 75 workers at the company’s plant on West Marginal Way.

The JFC workers are specialists who forge everything from propeller shafts used in ships and submarines to parts used in the aerospace, maritime and drilling industries. Their products are created from stainless steel, aluminum, titanium and other metals.

“These workers are among the best in their field and they deserve a good contract,” said IAM 751 President Jon Holden. “They are our union brothers and sisters and we will stand beside them.”

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 woman at 51 employers across Washington and California.

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