NEW – Added January 25, 2017

No. We will follow the standard process for both. In terms of raises, there is an overall window for providing notices between Feb. 10 and 21 and we will use the same timeframe being used across the company. Raises will be effective March 3 and visible in paychecks on March 23. PBI amounts will be announced after quarterly results and paid out in March in keeping with standard policies.

We have asked all site executives to have a heightened presence on the shop floor to answer individual questions from teammates preparing to vote. During this time frame it is important that we are even more available to have direct, individual conversations to address the specific questions of teammates. All-team meetings are a good way to address a large gathering but only allow for limited response to questions.

Boeing is applying the appropriate resources to protect the competitive advantage created by the BSC team. We are working with the same lawyer who helped defend the BSC site when the IAM tried to shut it down and who helped when the IAM withdrew its petition for a vote in 2015. An election petition is a legal filing, and both the company and the union use attorneys to provide legal counsel through this process.  The published materials are prepared in-house, not by “anti-union lawyers,” as the union suggests.  Their allegation is a common union distraction tactic during these campaigns.  When they see materials they don’t like, you will see them claim they were prepared by high-priced lawyers rather than providing an actual response to the facts.  The next time you see them make this claim, ask them why they aren’t providing any facts or specific examples that differ with the information the company provided.  We are committed to getting facts and data to our teammates so they go to the polls fully informed of the realities of unionization.

Not at all. Minimum wage in South Carolina is $7.25 an hour. Some fast food places pay as much as $8.80 per hour. BSC starting wage for an entry level teammate within the production and maintenance population represent is $17.25 – and Boeing provides exceptional medical, dental and vision insurance, educational benefits and other opportunities not found in fast food jobs.

Election Details

The National Labor Relations Board has determined that the vote will be Wednesday, Feb. 15.

Teammates in the following job codes have been determined to be members of the voting population: Aircraft Machinists (DCTB), Aircraft Painters (DCTJ), Assemblers (DAJX), Equipment Maintenance Specialists (DATK), Fabrication Specialists (DCTL), Facility Plant Maintenance Specialists (8AAN), Flight Readiness Technicians (DEJ1), Product Acceptance Specialists (JADC), Production Coordinators (ECBV), Tool & Fixture Specialists (DHTM) and NDT Quality Test Specialists (JACU) employed by Boeing at the North Charleston 787 Dreamliner production, fabrication and assembly facilities and at the Interiors Responsibility Center (IRC) and the Propulsion South Carolina facilities.

The election will be conducted by agents of the National Labor Relations Board. Neither the Company nor the union will be at the polling places during voting times.
Yes. No one will ever know how you voted unless you tell them.
There will be polling places throughout the airport and north campuses during all three shifts. Those details will be determined and communicated if the NLRB determines an election will be held.
The NLRB will tally the ballots shortly after the last polling place closes. We will communicate the result immediately after that tally is complete.
YES! This decision will affect everyone – whether they vote or not, and whether they ever join a union. The outcome will be decided by a majority of people who actually vote. In other words, if only 100 people vote, then 51 people could decide the futures of all 3,000 teammates in the voting unit. The union would represent each and every one of those 3,000 teammates and can agree to a contract that changes their terms and conditions of employment.

Union Representation

Though we believe that a union is not in either the company’s or our teammates’ best interest, we simply want you to make a fully informed decision based on all the facts, not just the facts that the union has presented. For those of you that have not worked in a union environment, you need to know how a seniority system works, how your money would be used, what happens during a strike, and what effect a union has on flexibility and competitiveness before you can make a fully informed decision. Finally you need to know what problems a union can solve and which ones they can’t before you make this most important decision.

 

You have the right to obtain all of the information that you can about the unions, and your supervisor or manager or Human Resources representative will assist you in getting this information. You have the right to deny union organizers access to your home. You have the right to be free from harassment by union organizers or supporters. You have the right to express your opinions, for or against unionization and most importantly, you have the right to vote no in a union election.
You would lose the right to speak for yourself. The union’s leaders would decide what terms it would request from the company. It would be illegal for the company to deal directly with you on “wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment.” Furthermore, any deal that the union might make regarding work rules, job-bidding rights, or anything else would apply to everyone, even if you didn’t like it and didn’t vote for it or the union.
During negotiations, the union may ask for something that’s important only to them such as dues check-off (making sure they get union dues in the contract) or super-seniority for shop stewards and you might find something you personally like being traded away in return.
If a union were to be voted in, the fact is that all terms and conditions of employment are determined through the collective bargaining process. It is an uncertain process, and nobody can predict the outcome. What is certain is that everything our teammates have now would be subject to that collective bargaining process if a union were voted in. There are no guarantees with collective bargaining. A company must bargain in good faith with a union, but there is no law that can compel a company to agree to union demands. If you have more questions, you can talk to your manager or email us.
Not true. The International President, the Grand Lodge (International Union), and the 202-page IAM Constitution call the shots.
“SEC. 3. The government and superintendence of all L.Ls. [Local Lodges], D.Ls. [District Lodges], councils and conferences, shall be vested in this G.L. [Grand Lodge] as the supreme head of all such lodges under its jurisdiction. To it shall belong the authority to determine the customs and usages in regard to all matters relating to craft. It is the obligation and responsibility of every member, officer, L.L., D.L., council, conference, or other subordinate body of the I.A.M. to comply with the provisions of this Constitution and the decisions of the G.L. officers in conformity therewith….(Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 5) In fact, the NLRB has said: “Under the National Labor Relations Act, a union is free to negotiate and make binding agreements, with or without the consent or ratification of bargaining unit employees.”
Only if you are paid up on all your financial obligations to the union.

“Members who fail to pay their dues, assessments, or other fees within the periods required by this Constitution or the bylaws of the L.L. or D.L. will be subject to automatic cancellation of membership. Members who are not in good standing are not entitled to any voice or vote or participation in any of the affairs of the G.L. or any of its subordinate bodies except as otherwise ARTICLE II 9 permitted under this Constitution.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 30)

You’d have to pay union dues, and any additional assessments or fees levied.

“Whenever the term “good standing” is used with reference to a member in this Constitution, it shall mean any person who has fulfilled the requirements for membership as prescribed herein and who has not voluntarily withdrawn therefrom, become ineligible for continued membership, or been suspended or expelled as provided in this Constitution or in the bylaws of subordinate lodges approved as required under this Constitution.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 30)
Because South Carolina is a Right to Work state, you cannot be compelled to join the union and pay union dues. However, if a union wins an election, even in a Right to Work state, the union would become the “exclusive” representative of all employees in the voting group – even those who didn’t want the union and didn’t join the union. Any contract the union negotiates after being voted in would apply to all employees, even those who didn’t join the union.
Under the Right to Work law, if a union is voted in, you cannot be required to join the union or pay dues in order to keep your job. But the IAM would represent all employees and any negotiated contract would apply to everyone in the voting group. And you will have no voice:

 

  • Only dues paying members are allowed to vote on whether to accept the negotiated contract or go on strike.
  • Only dues paying members are allowed to vote on union officers and shop stewards.

 

Unions in Right to Work states sometimes make it hard on employees who refuse to join. Non-dues payers are sometimes harassed and called “free riders” by union supporters.

 

Having a union at Boeing South Carolina will affect you whether you become a member and pay dues or not!
That will come as a shock to the many IAM members who have had to file Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charges against the union for hitting them with significant monetary fines. The truth is that the IAM Constitution very clearly authorizes Local Lodges to require all sorts of additional money from members, and to pursue them by all legal means:
“Fines or other levies within the authority of a L.L. to make shall be due within 30 days after levied. If not paid within that time, the S.T. shall notify those in arrears in writing, by registered mail, at the last known address, with copy of same to the G.S.T. Should they fail to make payment within 60 days from the date of such written notice, their membership may be cancelled regardless of the date to which their dues are paid. Initiation fees, reinstatement fees, dues and fines shall constitute a legal liability by a member to the L.L. The cost of litigation arising from charges against a member by reason of such liabilities shall constitute a legal debt payable by such member.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 121)
No. There are entire sections dedicated to the many International Union officials and their salaries, benefits, duties and obligations. But there’s also an entire Article entitled “Duties of Members.” For example, the IAM doesn’t want you to work overtime, even if you want to:
“Members shall discourage the working of overtime, in order to further the opportunities for full employment, a living wage, and a 40-hour workweek.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 143)
Here is what the union constitution says about that: “The following actions or omissions shall constitute misconduct by a member which shall warrant a reprimand, fine, suspension and/or expulsion from membership … Refusal or failure to perform any duty or obligation imposed by this Constitution; the established policies of the I.A.M.; the valid decisions and directives of any officer or officers thereof; or, the valid decisions of the E.C. or the G.L. convention.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 147)
The IAM constitution says this:

 

“The following actions or omissions shall constitute misconduct by a member which shall warrant a reprimand, fine, suspension and/or expulsion from membership … encouraging secession from the IAM; advocating or encouraging or attempting to inaugurate any dual labor movement; or supporting movements or organizations inimical to the interest of the I.A.M. or its established laws and policies.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 147)
Signing a union card or petition can authorize a union to act as your agent in bargaining over wages, hours, and working conditions. The cards can also serve to support union elections held by the NLRB. You may have been told that you were just signing up to get information or perhaps you did not have all the facts before you signed. Now that you have learned more about the issue, you may be wondering whether you can revoke your signed card. Because the question was raised, here is a procedure you could follow if you choose to exercise your right to get your card back:
You have the right ask the person who got you to sign the card to give it back to you. If your card is not returned and you want to be sure the card is not used, then you have the right take the next step.
You can send the union a letter similar to the one below.

DO NOT send a copy of the letter to any Company supervisors or managers. We do not want to know who signed a card or who has made the confidential decision to revoke their card. That is up to you.


[TODAY’S DATE]
International Association of Machinists
7025 Dorchester Road
North Charleston, SC 29418
Dear Sir:
I write to revoke and rescind any union “authorization” card, or any other indication of support for your union, that I may have signed in the past. Effective immediately, any such card, authorization or indication of support for your union is null and void. I do not wish to be represented by, or belong to your organization.
Please return to me any union authorization card that I may have signed; or otherwise confirm in writing that you are honoring this revocation and rescission of support for your union.
Sincerely,
[SIGNATURE]
[YOUR NAME]
[YOUR ADDRESS]

 

No one knows the answer to that question. With a union, seniority and bumping rights, just like all other terms and conditions of employment, are on the table and subject to bargaining. Collective bargaining is an uncertain, and potentially risky, process. There are no guarantees with collective bargaining. A company must bargain in good faith with a union, but there is no law that can compel a company to agree to union demands. If you have more questions, you can talk to your manager or email us.
It is possible for a represented employee to apply for a position at a non-union site. Of course, this is subject to job openings at the non-union location that would be a fit for the individual’s skill-set and experience. That candidate would be treated just as any other internal job candidate would be throughout the application and interview process. If a represented employee were to accept a similar position at a non-union site, they would voluntarily forfeit their membership in the union as part of their job acceptance.

Washington State is not a Right to Work state, and as such joining the union is a mandatory condition of employment. This is what is commonly referred to as a “closed shop.”

In a Right to Work state, such as South Carolina, employees cannot be compelled to join a union. However, if a union is in place or is voted in, then that union is the exclusive representative for all employees in the voting group, regardless of whether one has joined the union or not. This means that any contract negotiated by the union would apply to everyone in the voting group.

Pay & Benefits

No. If the union suggests it can get you a pay increase, ask them to put it in a written guarantee signed by the union President. The union may want you to believe that you will get Seattle wages in South Carolina, but they have not guaranteed that in writing and have not promised to make up the difference if they fail. In fact, in the December 2014 issue of The Leading Edge, the IAM’s newsletter targeted at BSC teammates, the IAM stated very clearly that any contract at BSC would be completely independent from that of IAM 751 in Washington state and Oregon. The reason: Collective bargaining is a very uncertain process. Unions can ask for anything but the law does not require a company to agree to union demands. In fact, IAM contracts closer to home in Alabama and North Carolina aren’t anywhere close to the IAM 751 wage scale.

 

If you research the IAM’s most recent ratified collective bargaining agreements with aerospace companies across the United States (including Boeing), you’ll find that wages are negotiated based on local labor markets. The IAM itself admits this fact in the contract they negotiated with an aerospace company in Kinston, N.C. Boeing South Carolina teammates are doing extremely well when compared to what the IAM has negotiated for other aerospace companies in our region, including at Boeing in Huntsville.

 

The IAM will promise anything to get teammates to sign a card, but they can’t guarantee they’ll be able to deliver. There are no guarantees with collective bargaining. It is an uncertain process, and no one can guarantee an outcome. A company must bargain in good faith with a union, but there is no law that can compel a company to agree to union demands.
No. There is no guaranty in collective bargaining. Boeing South Carolina (BSC) teammates have worked a lot of overtime over the past few years – that’s true. The fact is, 787 employees in Everett, those already represented by the IAM, are working at similar overtime hours as BSC teammates. It’s not uncommon on a new program, especially one as technologically advanced as the 787, to see surges in overtime as new models are introduced or engineering changes are incorporated into the airplane build process. It is a natural part of growing new business as vibrantly as we have here in South Carolina.
Nevertheless, we’ve greatly reduced our overtime hours at BSC as we’ve stabilized our production rates, and we remain strongly committed to continuing to find ways to improve work/life balance for our teammates.

 

No. The union can make all sorts of promises but a company does not have to agree to any demands that are not for the good for the company, would not be a good business practice or might even be harmful to the company. There’s no way the union can guarantee promises they’ve made during a campaign will be fulfilled by a company. If the union is voted in, the company would be obligated to bargain with the union over all wages and benefits. But, the union can only get what the company agrees to give after good-faith negotiations. Whether current benefits will continue depends solely on negotiations.
“In the give and take of collective bargaining, the union might give up insurance, holidays, or vacation time to obtain dues check-off from the company.” (Source: NLRB Case: La-Z-Boy Company)

Union Dues / Fines and Assessments

According to the IAM, union dues would be more than $800 per year, with no guarantee of getting a better deal in return for those dues.
“The following actions or omissions shall constitute misconduct by a member which shall warrant a reprimand, fine, suspension and/or expulsion from membership … Actions constituting a violation of the provisions of this Constitution, or any action which would constitute a violation of the L.L. bylaws. … Any other conduct unbecoming a member of the I.A.M.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 147)

 

“The following actions or omissions shall constitute misconduct by a member which shall warrant a reprimand, fine, suspension and/or expulsion from membership …Accepting employment in any capacity in an establishment where a strike or lockout exists as recognized under this Constitution, without permission.” (Source: IAM 2013 Constitution, page 147)

 

Of course not. Ask the hundreds of thousands of workers who were laid off in the automobile, steel, and other highly unionized industries whether a union prevented their layoffs. Job security is dependent on a company’s ability to win business and remain competitive in the marketplace. Union-represented employees across the country in various industries are currently facing layoffs or have recently been laid off.

Layoffs and Strikes

That is a question to ask the union. It is a fact that IAM has been on strike 10 times since it withdrew its petition at Boeing South Carolina in April 2015. So, if the union says it will never strike, make sure you get that in writing. If the company did not agree to the union’s demands, the union might try to pressure the company by going out on strike. It is easy for the union to make all kinds of big promises, but it is something else for the union to fulfill those promises.
No. No – no work, no pay. The company will not pay regular wages, healthcare, or retirement benefits for the time that employees are on strike. However, while you’re out on strike, union bosses will continue to receive their normal pay, benefits and perks – funded by you and other members’ dues.

 

That would largely depend on the union and whether it provided strike benefits to its members. When strike benefits are paid, they are usually less than $150 per week. To receive those benefits, union members may be required to walk a picket line.

 

Work Environment

A union can only get what a company agrees to give after good-faith bargaining. Most contracts provide that a company can discharge employees for just cause. Boeing has always had a policy that it would only discipline or discharge employees for just cause, so the typical union contract would not provide any greater protection than employees already have. We have never seen a contract that would prevent an employer from terminating an employee who did not perform their job or did not report to work, and it is unrealistic for a union to claim that it could provide protection like this.

 

Absolutely not. The law prohibits a union from restraining or coercing a company in the selection of its supervisors. It is not unusual for there to be some issues among people who work closely together. But the way to deal with problems of this nature is to talk them out together and not bring in a union whose intent is to create a gap between employees and supervisors.

 

Who is the IAM?

The IAM is the same union that wanted to prevent South Carolina from even building 787s. In March 2010, they filed a charge with the National Labor Relations Board challenging Boeing’s decision to put 787 Final Assembly & Delivery in South Carolina.They even stated publicly that they thought we didn’t have the ability to build a plane here in South Carolina.

The IAM represents more than 35,000 members in the Puget Sound region of Washington state. If they were to be successful in unionizing BSC, membership in South Carolina would equal only about 7% of the Puget Sound membership. Whose interests do you think they would protect most – South Carolina’s or thousands of dues- paying members in other states?

Boeing South Carolina

Boeing South Carolina does not currently offer public tours. However, students in grades 5-12 in school districts throughout South Carolina are invited to participate in the Boeing South Carolina DreamLearners program. The mission of DreamLearners is to enhance student and teacher awareness of Boeing South Carolina through experiential learning and exposure to business and industry, inspiring the next generation of Boeing South Carolina teammates.

The program takes place in our Tour Balcony overlooking the production floor of the 787 Final Assembly building and includes the following:
· An understanding of what we do at Boeing South Carolina
· An introduction to the 787 Dreamliner and aerodynamics
· A visual tour of the 787 production process
· Airplane building exercise

The DreamLearners program and paper airplane building activity covers approved, grade-appropriate academic standards in Math and Science.

For more information, email [email protected]

Do you have a question that’s not answered above? Ask here.
  • Boeing may use the information you provide to send you future communications about Boeing and issues that may be of interest to you. For further information, please review Boeing’s Privacy Policy.