The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) on Monday accepted an invitation from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) to meet with Lockheed Martin and federal mediators in Dallas/Fort Worth, TX to explore settlement possibilities for the strike that began on April 23, 2012.
“The IAM welcomes the involvement of federal mediators and we’re looking forward to the face-to-face meetings with Lockheed,” said IAM Aerospace General Vice President Mark Blondin. “While there remains no shortage of resolve on both sides of this dispute, we’re hopeful the FMCS can provide the independent perspective that often produces the framework for a resolution.”
Members of the District 776 Negotiating Committee will be joined by representatives from IAM headquarters for the mediated bargaining sessions, which will commence on June 20. To provide every chance for the meetings to be successful, all sides have agreed to withhold public statements until the sessions are concluded.
District 776 members voted in April by a 93 percent margin to reject a contract from Lockheed that barred new hires from participating in the traditional defined benefit pension plan and would switch a majority of Lockheed workers to a high-deductible, high-cost health care plan with no cap on annual out-of-pocket expenses.
District 776 represents more than 3,600 IAM members at Lockheed’s facilities in Pax River NAS, MD, Ft. Worth, TX and Edwards AFB, CA.