IAM leaders join Machinists on picket line at Triumph
SPOKANE — Leaders of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers today marched in solidarity with Machinists Union Local Lodge 86 members in Spokane, who are in the second week of a lockout at Triumph Composite Systems.
IAM International President Bob Martinez and Western Territory General Vice President Gary Allen also met with local union representatives to assure them they will have the support and resources they need to prevail.
“The strike at Triumph matters to workers across the U.S.,” said Martinez. “Any time a profitable company outsources good jobs and hollows out the ones that are left, it’s a clear signal for other companies to do the same. These workers, this community and this country all deserve better.”
On May 9, Local 86 members voted by 94 percent to reject a contract offer from Triumph that failed to restore deep concessions taken from workers in 2013. The company further angered workers by stating it would continue to send work to Mexico.
A strike was scheduled to start on May 11, but before it could begin, Triumph management sent workers home without payout on May 10, starting a lockout.
“Triumph management guaranteed this labor dispute with proposals designed to pit new hires against long-term employees and create a divisive and hostile work atmosphere,” said Allen. “I salute these members for having the courage to stand up to corporate bullying and demanding to be treated with the basic respect all American workers deserve.”
Machinists Union District Lodge 751 President Jon Holden, who joined Martinez and Allen on the picket line, called on Triumph to immediately suspend its use of replacement workers and resume good faith bargaining. “This dispute will be settled once management recognizes the hard work and dedication of the skilled workers who earn Triumph millions of dollars every day,” said Holden.
Visit the IAM Eastern Washington Facebook page for updates and photos as the strike develops.