Boeing firefighters reject latest contract offer

RENTON, Wash. — Boeing firefighters overwhelmingly rejected the company’s latest contract offer Wednesday according to the union, IAFF Local I-66.

“This round of negotiations resulted in Boeing presenting its second, ‘Best and Final Offer,’ a contradiction in terms, and a clear sign of the corporate giant’s complete lack of respect for our members,” said IAFF General President Edward A. Kelly.

In a statement sent to KIRO 7 Wednesday night Boeing said:

“It’s unfortunate the union’s leadership has continued its pattern of bad faith bargaining. The union earlier accepted and agreed to endorse our strong offer which provides an average of $21,000 in increased take home pay and additional wage increases. Our contingency plan remains in place and ensures that we can provide the same levels of safety and emergency response with highly qualified firefighters indefinitely.”

125 union firefighters and emergency medical workers have been locked out of Boeing facilities in our area since May 4 after Boeing says the union refused to bring their previous officer to a vote.

Since then, the firefighters have been on the picket line.

Boeing is currently using replacement firefighters from its other sites. Those firefighters are not in the union involved in the dispute.

Boeing presented the union with an amended contract offer on Monday.

The union’s main issues center around pay. Wages that are up to 30 percent lower than neighboring municipal departments according to the union. And, that it takes a firefighter 14 years to reach the top wage.

The union says it also becomes a safety issue because their most qualified often leave for higher pay. A Boeing spokesperson said the firefighters currently performing work at its sites have the same skills as the firefighters represented by the IAFF.

Boeing says the latest amended offer would have bumped the average firefighter pay from $91,000 to 112,000 in the first year of the contract, with additional pay raises in the remaining years.

The union says the offer would have only lowered years required to earn the top wage by a single year.

Comments on this article