Boeing engineers and technical workers overwhelmingly rejected the company’s latest contract offer, and contract negotiations will resume Tuesday, the SPEEA union announced Monday night.
Their current contact is set to expire Oct. 6.
Votes show engineers in the Professional Unit rejected the offer by 9,770 to 454. Workers in the Technical Unit rejected the offer by 5,327 to 154. Votes were a straight "reject" or "accept" of the offer, with no strike authorization on the ballots.
The union leadership had recommended their members reject the offer.
SPEEA and Boeing resume negotiations Tuesday.
“We hope the vote results clear away the nonsense and allow us to begin substantive negotiations,” said Ray Goforth, executive director of SPEEA. “Until now, meaningful discussions have eluded us because the Boeing negotiating team was convinced they understood the members better than the SPEEA negotiating team.
"With this question resolved, our expectation is that everyone can focus upon getting a mutually acceptable agreement.”
Boeing said in a statement: "We look forward to sitting back down with SPEEA tomorrow. Our goal is to reach an agreement as soon as possible."
A local of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, SPEEA represents 26,560 aerospace professionals at Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita, Kan., and Triumph Composite Systems Inc. in Spokane, Wash.
The union had said the rejected Boeing proposal would have provided employees with a salary increase at roughly the rate of inflation, reduced medical benefits, and replaced the current pension program with a 401(k) plan that SPEEA said would lower retirement benefits by up to 40 percent.