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UE-GE National Contract Negotiations



Week of 6.19:
• Saturday, 6.24
• Friday, 6.23
• Thursday, 6.22
• Wednesday, 6.21
• Tuesday, 6.20
• Monday, 6.19

Large Table:
Thursday, 6.15
Wednesday, 6.14
• Tuesday, 6.13
Thursday, 6.8
Wednesday, 6.7
• Tuesday, 6.6
• Thursday, 6.1
• Wednesday, 5.31
Tuesday, 5.30
Opening Statement

(full text)

• Back to main UE-GE Contract 2000 Information page

Online Fliers

Our on-line fliers, available for printing, posting and distribution:

The GE Pension Plan: Giving Us the Business

Waging a Struggle

GE's Diet COLA

• Prescription for Disaster

Insure Our Health — Not GE's Wealth!

Get Up-Stand Up for Contract 2000

GE's Competition? There Isn't Any!

More Info

• UE has represented thousands of General Electric employees under a UE-GE national contract since 1938.

• We are one of only two unions holding a national agreement with GE.

• There are 14 unions with GE members which have joined together in the Coordinated Bargaining Committee (CBC) of GE unions.

• UE-GE Contract 2000 Archives page ...

Saturday, June 24th

Gap Closes Slightly;
'Maze of Obstacles'
Still Remain

On this page:

UE-GE Small Table Report
Saturday, June 24th, 2000

The penultimate day of negotiations for a new UE-GE National Contract, has now come and gone, with the mighty General Electric Company still playing a game of hide and seek with over 30,000 GE Union members. The yawning gulf separating the union and the company negotiators closed ever so slightly today, but a maze of obstacles standing in the way of a new contract remain.

Chief among these is GE’s "Reverse COLA" on medical care cost shifting which remains prominently on the table, even as the company sensibly withdrew their proposal to sock it to retirees on prescription drug co-pays. In addition, with one day to go, there has yet to be any sighting of the SERO window, which long service GE workers, anxious to bid adieu to the GE pressure cooker, have been clamoring for.

On the pension front, GE upped the earnings threshold before imposing mandatory contributions, and put a modest increase in the supplements on the table. Nevertheless, disability and early retirement areas are untouched, and GE has refused thus far to address adequately the need to extend supplements to cover the rising Social Security ages. Moreover GE’s offer on the pension tables remains grossly inadequate. A Union counter proposal on this today awaits the company’s response.

GE’s wage offer inched upward today, and we do mean inched, with still no sign of a COLA improvement. On the brighter side GE did propose a skilled rates adjustment. There were also some language changes in Article XXIII, Job and Income Security, as well as Death in Family, among others.

So now it has come down to the end, with the most financially successful corporation on the face of the earth kicking and screaming over the demands of its workforce for a little slice of justice. Whatever tomorrow brings, GE Workers are to be commended for getting up and standing up for themselves, their families, and their co-workers.

UE was represented at the small table by General President John Hovis and UE-GE Conference Board Secretary Steve Tormey.

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Pension and Insurance
Subcommittee Report

The union members representing UE and the CBC unions on the Pension and Insurance Subcommittee finished up their work with a half-day session that reviewed union demands.

Point after point was driven home regarding the need for a fair and substantial pension settlement. And with a pension trust fund that is bulging like a carcass in the hot sun, lame company excuses for why improvements were "not competitive" were demolished for one final time during this round of negotiations.

On the insurance front, subcommittee members also re-capped union demands for across-the-board improvements. And regarding GE attempts to shift an ever-expanding amount of health care costs onto the backs of union members, company negotiators were introduced to the newest description of these concession demands. Instead of using the company description for these concessions, delegates revealed to the company that the health concession demands were more accurately described as the "Special Health Insurance Takeaways" otherwise known as "SH*T". This also gave rise to the new slogan in opposition to this attack, "No SH*T!" Company negotiators took detailed note of this presentation.

UE was represented at the Pension and Insurance Subcommittee table by Dave Adams, Local 506, Chris Barrickman, Local 731, Ted Bradley, Local 1010, Bill Callahan, Local 751, Joyce Sumner, Local 332, and UE International Representative Chris Townsend.

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Contract Language
Subcommittee Report

The Contract Language Subcommittee met for half a day as well, and also re-capped an array of union demands.

Delegates pushed hard for a fair and ample wage increase, a sweetened COLA, improvements in paid time off, and improvements in various Apparatus Service Shop issues. GE arguments to the contrary were flattened in short order.

The company was also excoriated for their willingness to extend key pension improvements to unorganized GE workers during several recent UE organizing drives. This use of the pension trust fund as a union busting device was exposed for one final time.

And in one final blast, UE Subcommittee co-chair Pat Rafferty told the company that the rank-and-file back home had no interest in paying more for their health care via the "Special Health Insurance Takeaways" plan.

UE was represented at the Contract Language Subcommittee table by co-chair Pat Rafferty, Local 506, Betsy Potter, Local 618, Nita Gonzales, Local 1010, Bob Brown, Local 332.

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