The members of UE Local 243 ratified a new three-year contract at Sargent/Assa Abloy in March which increases wages, improves the pension and vision and dental plans, and preserves their healthcare.
The new contract provides for a $2800 lump sum check in year one, a three percent general wage increase in year two and a 2.5 percent wage increase in year three.
UE members won a bump to their pension multiplier of $2.00 per year, and changes in the current vision and dental plans to provide increased benefits. The dental plan will now cover half the cost of dental implants, which was previously not a covered benefit. It will also cover dental for children to age 26, as opposed to age 18 in the prior plan. The vision plan now provides greater flexibility of providers and a larger reimbursement toward glasses and contacts. Both plans are at no additional cost to the employee.
Most significantly, the members were able to hold on to their coveted health care with no increase in cost for the entire three year term of the contract. This was the key issue in bargaining and the team fought hard and successfully to maintain this benefit.
Negotiations came down to the wire, but Local 243 members stuck together and remained solid and strong throughout, making plans to take a strike vote as the contract expiration approached. The company, realizing that UE members were not bluffing about strike action, settled the contract.
The Local 243 negotiating committee consisted of President Wayne Morrison, Chief Steward Chris Fiorentino, Anna Tondalo, Mitch Cannon, Butch Santore, Andy Vissichio, John Cronan, Mack Mention and Steve Saunders. They were assisted by International Representative Barbara Resnick.