WORKERS at Boeing’s South Carolina plant rejected union representation on Wednesday after a massive propoganda campaign by the firm.
The staff at the factory, which makes the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, voted against membership of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
“We’re disappointed the workers at Boeing South Carolina will not yet have the opportunity to see all the benefits that come with union representation,” said IAM lead organiser Mike Evans.
“But more than anything, we are disheartened they will have to continue to work under a system that suppresses wages, fosters inconsistency and awards only a chosen few.”
Boeing followed the example of Toyota and other employers in running a concerted propaganda campaign against the union.
“Boeing management spent a lot of money to make sure power and profits remained concentrated at the very top,” said Mr Evans. The company’s anti-union conduct reached new lows.”
Boeing produced videos that were shown repeatedly on local TV stations and at the plant.
The firm was attracted to set up its factory in the city of North Charleston by the Republican-run state government’s financial inducements and open opposition to organised labour.
The union, which has historically been weak in the south, responded by lobbying the former Democratic federal government to legislate for automatic collective bargaining rights. Workers at the plant have a number of outstanding grievances.
Retired Boeing manager Al Reatz, who backed the union recognition campaign, accused senior managers on Monday of refusing to pay agreed bonuses when staff meet required performance targets.
Staff have also complained that workplace policy changes from month to month.
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