Members of Local 1107 secured a new three-year agreement with Freudenberg-NOK in December. Local 1107 members manufacture head gaskets for Nissan and Harley Davidson and are now manufacturing components used in the manufacturing of new hydrogen fuel cells.
The contract includes across-the-board wage increases of 6.25 percent in the first year, 3 percent in the second year, and 2.5 percent in the third year. The local was able to bring the new hire rate up to $20.71 an hour. Shift premiums for the second and third shift were increased from $0.25 and $0.35 respectively to $0.50 per hour upon ratification.
Members won paid parental leave for the first time, with all employees entitled to two weeks upon birth, adoption, or foster care placement. President Scott “Cowboy” German said “we all know two weeks is not enough to care for a new child, but we plan to fight to expand this important new benefit in coming contracts so that our members can enjoy needed work-life balance the employer likes to talk about but never addresses.” For the first time workers will also be able to cash out personal time and up to 40 hours of vacation time annually. In addition to these important economic gains, members were able to make improvements in representation language and the grievance procedure, and management will now have to provide the local with an electronic seniority list with contact information monthly.
When asked how he felt about the latest contract, German said, “We won wage gains that were greater than any that we have seen in a long time, but the most important thing we did was fight back takeaways management sought, and protected our excellent contract our members have fought to protect for decades.
“When management tried to come for our flex time and personal time our members fought back, stickered up, wore shirts, and marched on the boss saying hands off our paid time. Having the best wages in the area doesn't mean a lot if you don’t have time to spend with your family and that is not something we are giving up, ever. Our power is on the shop floor and always has been. Thank you to all the members who make this local what it is.”
The Local 1107 negotiating committee consisted of President Scott “Cowboy” German, Chief Steward Keith Piccione, Financial Secretary Jason Bailey, and at-large committee member Ryan Becerra. They were assisted by longtime UE activist Mike Bluell and Field Organizer Sean Fulkerson.