AKRON—Members of the United Steelworkers union have ratified a new four-year collective bargaining agreement with Goodyear that covers about 8,500 workers at six of the tire maker's U.S. facilities.
Steelworkers at plants in Buffalo, N.Y.; Topeka, Kan.; Fayetteville, N.C.; Danville, Va.; Gadsden, Ala.; and Akron passed the contract by an "overwhelming" margin, the USW said today on its website.
USW International President Leo W. Gerard said the ratified contract "improves income, retirement and job security, among other benefits."
Tom Conway, USW International vice president who chaired the union's Goodyear negotiations, said the new contract "protects our plants against closure throughout its term.
"We also negotiated a commitment from Goodyear to invest in our North American facilities so that future generations can look forward to continuing the tradition of manufacturing in these communities."
Cost of living adjustment coverage has been expanded to all USW-represented Goodyear employees, according to Conway, who said the new pact provides more flexibility for USW members to move between jobs within the plants.
"Our membership demanded a fair contract that improved standards of living without sacrificing the long-term viability of the company or placing our jobs at risk," said USW International Secretary-Treasurer Stan Johnson, the Pittsburgh-based union's Rubber and Plastic Industry Conference chair. "Thanks to their solidarity and the hard work of our negotiating committee, we are proud to have accomplished those goals with Goodyear."
The USW represents about 850,000 workers in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean in a variety of industries ranging from glassmaking to mining, steel, oil, paper, tire and rubber, as well as public sector, service and health care industries.