Spirit Aerosystems Workers Reject Tentative Deal, Plant Closed


A major link in the airliner manufacturer supply chain has been cut with the shutdown of Spirit Aerosystems in Wichita. On June 22, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers announced it would go on strike on June 24 after rejecting a tentative agreement. The company immediately halted operations and that means Boeing 737 MAX fuselages and dozens of other structures for Boeing, Airbus and other manufacturers are no longer being built.

Although the 6,000 employees are off the job, negotiations are reportedly continuing. The workers haven’t had a fully negotiated contract for 13 years but the offer they rejected had some major increases in wages and benefits. The average compounded pay increase worked out to 34 percent and included cost-of-living adjustments, a guaranteed annual bonus, a 14.7% increase in retirement benefits, increased paid time off, job security enhancements and made Sunday overtime voluntary.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.

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  1. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me, but I guess the union leaders think that with the current labor shortage and order backlog for Boeing and Airbus, they have a pretty good bargaining position.