After voting against a new contract earlier this week, more than 10,000 Deere & Co. workers represented by the UAW went on strike today, marking the construction and agricultural machinery manufacturer’s first major walkout in 35 years.
The union had said its members would quit their posts if no deal was reached on Wednesday. The vast majority of the union rejected a contract offer earlier this week that would have granted 5 percent increases to some workers and 6 percent increases to others at the Illinois company, the Illinois company reported. ‘Associated Press.
Brad Morris, vice president of labor relations at Deere, said the company is “committed to achieving a positive outcome for our employees, our communities and everyone involved.” He said Deere wanted a deal that would improve the economic situation for all employees.
“We will continue to work day and night to understand our employees’ priorities and resolve this strike, while keeping our operations ongoing for the benefit of all we serve,” Morris said.
Under the deal that workers rejected, a top-tier Deere production worker would earn just over $ 30 an hour, rising to $ 31.84 after five years, according to the proposal summary cited by the AP.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss said workers have a lot of bargaining power right now due to the ongoing worker shortage. “Right now in the United States, workers are in a very good position to negotiate, so now is a good time to strike,” Goss said.
Source: Associated press