Union: Company illegally withheld 401(k) matches

Cadence11EVERETT – Managers at Cadence Aerospace-Giddens in Everett are illegally retaliating against their workers who voted earlier this year to form a union, their union charges.

Among other things, the union alleges, Cadence-Giddens has illegally withheld 401(k) matches that were due to the workers, in retaliation for their vote to form the union. In addition, the union says, managers have refused to do employee evaluations that were necessary for the workers to receive raises, also in retaliation.

Machinists Union District Lodge 751 filed complaints with the National Labor Relations Board on Oct. 6, alleging these and three other violations of U.S. labor law by Cadence-Giddens managers.

“Workers at Cadence-Giddens have a right under federal law to form a union, free from interference, coercion and restraint,” said Richard Jackson, the union’s lead negotiator. “All employers – including Cadence Aerospace management – need to accept this truth and know that these laws apply to them.”

The union represents about 225 hourly workers at two Cadence-Giddens plants in Everett. The workers voted by a 3-to-2 margin in May to join District 751. Talks on a new collective bargaining agreement began in July.

Cadence17From the start, Cadence-Giddens management has engaged in activity that violates the workers’ rights, the union charged in its complaint to the NLRB.

The union alleges that:

  • The company has kept enforcing rules laid out in an employee handbook that violate the rights of workers under the National Labor Relations Act;
  • Company managers have made repeated statements to discourage workers from getting involved in the process for negotiating a union contract – including threatening to take away benefits; and
  • Cadence negotiators have delayed the negotiations process by refusing to provide information that the union negotiators need to have to bargain on behalf of the workers, and have a right to see under NLRB rules for collective bargaining.

“The millionaires who run Cadence Aerospace do not seem to realize they have a workforce that takes pride in their work and wants nothing more than to see the company succeed,” Jackson said. “Our members work hard at Giddens and are doing the work that makes the company profitable. It’s serious for them. It’s their livelihoods, and their families.”

The Cadence-Giddens workers produce precision-machined aerospace components, sub-assemblies and kits, and do sheet-metal forming. The Boeing Co. is a major customer for Cadence-Giddens, but parent company Cadence Aerospace also sells parts to Airbus, Lockheed Martin, Northrup Gruman and Fokker, along with providing parts to other aerospace suppliers.

Cadence8The Everett plants have the reputation for being the most-profitable and productive parts of the entire Cadence operation, which has eight subsidiaries across the United States and Mexico, said IAM 751 President Jon Holden.

“Our members deserve a contract that recognizes and rewards them for all they do to make Cadence a profitable corporation,” Holden said. “We have 33,000 members at Boeing and other employers who are ready to help them achieve that.”

Originally formed in 1935 by hourly workers at Boeing, District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 33,000 working men and women at 52 employers across Washington and California.

Follow IAM 751 on Twitter.


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