Whatever the outcome of tonight’s vote by IAM District 751, one thing the public won’t see tonight is a raucous scene in the union hall — like this one at the 2008 vote count that led to a 57-day strike.
That’s because A) there is no strike at issue here since the current contract runs through 2016 and B) surprisingly, the union Tuesday said media would only be allowed a brief glimpse inside the Seattle hall where votes will be counted. The press won’t be there to watch or film the tallying or the union leadership’s announcement of the result.
Media representatives will be permitted in the parking lot of IAM District 751 Headquarters (9125 15th Place S., Seattle, WA 98108) beginning at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, November 13.
Photographers will be given five minutes each to get b-roll and/or stills inside of the ballot counting in progress. Each photographer will be escorted. The same is true for radio reporters seeking nat sound.
That was the message from national IAM spokesman Jonathan Battaglia, who’s been brought in after local District 751 press officials were put on ice. No explanation was given for the media ban, but the rift among union leaders over the 777X contract just might have something to do with it.
Boeing watchers will recall that the resounding No vote on the 2008 contract led Gov. Gregoire and others to intercede with union chief Mark Blondin for a 48-hour cooling off period. Delaying the strike was roundly booed in the union hall.