Banks have made it more difficult to borrow money during the last three months. According to numbers from the Federal Reserve the rise in defaults on home loans have led to nervous banks and tougher credit standards. 75 percent of U.S. banks implemented tighter standards during the last three months, a 15 percent increase of the previous survey.
Pilots for United Airlines have targeted the company’s CEO by calling for his resignation. Union President Steve Welch said in the Wall Street Journal that “United has gone from being the finest airline in the world, with the best route structure and safety record, to a shell of its former self, “under CEO Glenn Tilton. The union has said the airline is allowing maintenance standards to deteriorate after four recent incidents of engine failure. The company has refused to reopen contract negotiations with pilots and plans to cut nearly 1000 pilot jobs.
As newspapers struggle to stay afloat in a changing media environment, one union has agreed to forgo raises in order to preserve jobs. Jesse Russell reports:
Drivers for Philadelphia’s two largest newspapers voted overwhelmingly on Sunday to pass on a $25-a-week pay raise in an attempt to help the papers cut costs as revenue declines. Both The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Daily News are owned by Philadelphia Media Holdings. The workers are represented by Teamsters local 628 and they voted 193-7 to pass on the wage increase that was scheduled to start on September 1. Before the contract amendment can go into affect, eleven other unions must vote in favor.
By Doug Cunningham
The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace wants to make sure that Boeing isn’t using it’s employee pension fund for executive pensions. So SPEEA is requesting that Boeing reveal the extent and funding source of its executive pension plans. SPEEA spokesman Bill Dugovich.
[Dugovich]: “U.S. corporations are moving their executive pensions into their regular employee pension funds to take advantage of tax breaks. Of course, we’re very concerned that this may be happening at the Boeing company. And we and employees need to know if it is indeed happening.”
After a struggle that lasted for eight decades, the 4,000 workers at one of the world’s largest rubber plantations will receive wage increases, an improvement in work conditions and upgraded housing and educational facilities after signing a historic agreement.
The Firestone Agricultural Workers Union of Liberia (FAWUL) signed the new deal with Firestone late last week. The new contract provides significant gains for workers, including wage increases of 24 percent for rubber tappers, retroactive to the expiration of a previous agreement in January 2007.
Thousands of Ohio jobs are at risk because of a proposed shipping-company deal that would close DHL operations at an airport in Wilmington.
The process that has resulted in DHL’s threat to close its operations at the Wilmington airport demonstrates how corporate interests and lobbyists win out over communities and workers—and Sen. John McCain’s campaign is at the heart of it.
In a massive outreach effort, the AFL-CIO is reaching out to Ohio union members about this crucial issue—through mail, e-mail and worksite outreach. In Ohio, 100,000 union swing voters are receiving a mailer about the DHL deal and McCain’s role in making it happen. The e-mail is encouraging members to call McCain’s campaign office in Ohio and tell him to fire campaign manager Rick Davis. (Ohio readers: Add your voice by calling 1-614-441-8097 or sending an e-mail to email@example.com.)
Some 65,000 East Coast workers at Verizon won what union leaders called a “breakthrough agreement,” when negotiators for the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and Electrical Workers (IBEW) reached a tentative three-year deal with Verizon yesterday.
The announcement came as the clock was ticking to a midnight deadline and followed a weekend’s worth of worker rallies demanding a fair contract. The new pact promotes union jobs, expands bargaining rights, provides good health care for both active and retired workers and increases wages and pensions.
Some 4,700 workers at Hawker Beechcraft in Kansas went on strike after their contract expired, and more news from the “Bargaining Digest Weekly.” The AFL-CIO Collective Bargaining Department delivers daily, bargaining-related news and research resources to more than 900 subscribers. Union leaders can register for this service through our website, Bargaining@Work.
WORK STOPPAGES AND ACTIONS
IAM, Hawker Beechcraft: Members of the Machinists (IAM) at Hawker Beechcraft in Kansas went on strike after their contract expired, which covered 4,700 hourly workers at the Wichita plant and 500 more in Salina. Sticking points are health care, pension benefits and a salary disparity between the wages of Hawker workers and their peers at Cessna Aircraft Co.