AUBURN (WSYR-TV) – Two days after workers at the TRW auto parts plant rejected a contract offer, the company insists it is willing to keep negotiating.
Workers have been on strike since Tuesday when their contract expired just after midnight.
Employees who had reported to work at 11pm Monday night, walked back out the door an hour later, met by dozens of people who began marching next to the plant.
Employees had concerns about changes to the shift structure, which would have altered some five-day work weeks to shorter schedules with less hours in some cases, according to members of the ICWU/UFCW Local 192 C.
They also expressed disappointment that a wage increase was tied to a demand that would allow the company to hire temporary workers.
The union had offered back 93-cents an hour in their previous contract three years ago. They were hoping to recover some of that concession in a new deal.
On Wednesday, the workers considered an offer from the company that would ease mandatory overtime and concerns about the shift structure.
But, the issue of temporary workers remained on the table, prompting union members to reject the proposal by a convincing margin, 128-11.
In a statement on Saturday, a company spokesman said, “TRW continues to be willing to meet to discuss possible resolutions to the situation. We believe that the proposals made earlier by the company are key to the future success of the Auburn plant. The ability to utilize a flexible workforce and changes to shift patterns are necessary to support the additional new work planned for the plant. The previous company proposals also included a pay increase of 4.0 percent for most employees. These proposals were tentatively agreed to by the union leadership, and we are disappointed the employees rejected their union leaders' recommendation to accept the agreement.”
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