Farm equipment manufacturers are thankful that negotiations with striking workers at Deere & Co.’s Waterloo, Iowa, plant have been successful, after the two sides reached an agreement that extends the union’s collective bargaining agreement for four years. The strike lasted almost a month — during which workers maintained picket lines near the plant — but there was only one so far, according to a pair of union leaders.
Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers approved the four-year agreement by a 3-to-1 margin. The union had sought a three-year deal but Deere wanted the more time to implement its new contract policy, which significantly shifts the kind of jobs the company offers. It now includes highly-skilled manufacturing jobs with higher pay, lower health care costs, and the promise of job security, which the union said the company had not consistently promised to guarantee in the past.
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