| Sisters and Brothers,|
As I have communicated in my previous letters, the current climate of the defense industry is in turmoil due to a serious material shortage. This shortage of materials goes beyond just Raytheon Technologies but effects the industry as a whole. It is becoming increasingly difficult to stock the basics such as hardware, chemicals, etc. I want to stress that we have an incredible amount of work on the books and that this is just a shortage of materials.
During the last few months my team and I have worked tirelessly with the Company to try andalleviate some of the problems that have come from this shortage of materials. In the last few months, we utilized our 30 contractual production VLO’s and we were able to add an additional 3, for a total of 33. Shortly after that we were able to negotiate 7 more departmental VLO’s for our members. During this time my team and I also worked with the Company to amend Article 26.2 (c) of the collective bargaining agreement to allow temporary layoffs of 3 weeks, instead of the contractual 2 weeks, for the CCA Assembly C contractual department and the Production Materials classification. This resulted in 6 rounds of TLO’s at three weeks each, 80-100 members per round. Despite all of our efforts the Company is still faced with a serious material shortage. We are meeting with the Company weekly to get updates, and as of now, they do not know when this problem will be resolved.
After meeting with the Company, I have negotiated an opportunity for 100 more VLO’s, in order to protect some of our most junior members from being laid off to the street. Due to the overwhelming impact on the CCM and Patriot Ground departments, the Company is seeking 75 Assembly C’s from CCM and 25 Assembly B’s from Patriot Ground. If the Company does not reach those goals (which we do not see as likely), the VLO’s will be opened to every member of production in all classifications by seniority. The facilities leadership in Raytheon says they have enough work to keep everyone busy through the end of the year, do not anticipate a layoff, and therefor are not interested in being part of the VLO at this time.
In addition to the 100 VLO’s, we were also able to increase the severance package to attract members who may be close to retirement. For this VLO the PAY CONTINUANCE WILL BE DOUBLED. Your medical benefits will still stay in place 90 days beyond the pay continuance. The signups will start immediately and will last until September 30th, 2022. The last day of work for members who get the VLO will be Friday October 14th, 2022. To sign up, if you are in the Andover location, please go to the Union office. If you are in any other location, please contact your steward immediately and a chief steward will be in contact with you.
This is the first time in our Local’s history that we have been able to double the pay continuance language and it took a lot of hard work and determination to get this done for our members. I cannot stress enough how important this is for the Local as a whole. It givesour senior members who might have been on the fence about retiring a well-deserved departing bonus. As these senior members vacate higher paying jobs, it will open up opportunities for other members to move up. It will save the most junior members of our Local from hitting the street, some with no recall options as they are still in their trial period. My team and I worked diligently to get this from a Company who does not want to give our membership anything extra. I urge all members who are ready to retire to sign up for this great package.
Yours in Solidarity,
IBEW Local 1505
*The length of the continuance is as follows and can be found in Article 26.7 (b) (i) of the CBA. Less than 5 years of service – normally 4 weeks will double to 8 weeks
5 years to less than 10 years of service – normally 6 weeks will double to 12 weeks
10 years to less than 15 years of service – normally 8 weeks will double to 16 weeks
15 years to less than 20 years of service – normally 10 weeks will double to 20 weeks20 years or more of service – normally 12 weeks will double to 24 weeks