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Seattle Times letters to the editor

Topic: IAM

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January 2, 2014 at 4:41 PM

Boeing 777X: Readers’ views ahead of the Jan. 3 Machinists vote

Boeing workers are casting ballots Friday on a contract extension that includes bonuses, higher wages, established seniority and earning progression, health and welfare benefits, and a 401(k) plan.

In an editorial published Thursday, The Seattle Times editorial board is urging International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) District 751 to vote yes and compromise for the future. “This is a referendum on stable employment within a company and a region for decades to come.”

Also worth reading is former Washington state Attorney General Rob McKenna’s guest column on the vote, writing: “A yes vote is a pro-IAM-union vote. It is a pro-future-jobs vote. It is a pro-current-employees-having-a-job-until-they-retire vote.”

Our readers are weighing in as well ahead of the vote:

401(k) plans inevitable

Editor, the Times:

When I was an employee of Seattle First National Bank, it announced that it was terminating a defined-benefit pension plan in favor of a profit-sharing plan. The year? 1966. The reason? A pension plan was not financially feasible.

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0 Comments | More in Boeing | Topics: 777X, IAM

December 19, 2013 at 7:31 AM

Union members deserve a vote on Boeing’s new contract offer

First vote happened too fast and was based on emotion

Boeing machinists union member Kevin Flynn walks near a union hall in support of his leaders' rejection of Boeing's last contract offer as he waits for a small group of protesters who instead favor a vote, Wednesday, Dec. 18, in Everett, Wash. Local union leaders rejected the offer last week because they said it was too similar to one voted down last month. Some members say they want another chance to vote on a contract that would keep production of the new 777X in Washington. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Boeing machinists union member Kevin Flynn walks near a union hall in support of his leaders’ rejection of Boeing’s last contract offer as he waits for a small group of protesters who instead favor a vote, Wednesday, Dec. 18, in Everett, Wash. Local union leaders rejected the offer last week because they said it was too similar to one voted down last month. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

The International Association of Machinists’ no-vote was short-fused and largely based on emotion. Union leadership is being urged to let the membership vote on the new Boeing contract offer [“Desperate for lift, Long Beach pitches a skilled workforce,” page one, Dec. 18].

My hope is that members will focus on the contract and on what a yes or no vote means for them and their union brothers and sisters. Emotional issues of Boeing management’s compensation, stock performance and profits are distractions. These are not contract issues.

If the 777X is built here, there is also a good case to continue to build future new airplane models here.

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0 Comments | More in Boeing | Topics: Boeing, IAM, International Association of Machinists