Without the deal, company officials had said they would take a significant amount of work and possibly hundreds of jobs in Erie. The deal will not be official until it is voted on Wednesday by the roughly 1,700 members of two EU locals in Erie. A worker writes on the Facebook page of EU Local 506: Everyone congratulates, but the laid-off employees become here. With 2 levels, it will tear the union apart over time. This is unacceptable. Shame on all those who are satisfied with it. I asked the HR manager for the status of 450 laid-off workers, and his response was, “You weren`t on the payroll when Wabtec took over.” They absolutely did not want to respect the recall rights. On Thursday, the EU released a unilateral list of “highlights” of the new agreement that, in addition to creating an increasing ten-year period for new laid-off workers, also provides for five-year recall rights, allowing the company to remove all of an employee`s wage earnings if a temporary layoff due to an economic recession exceeds that deadline. “It`s a good day for Erie,” he said. “As a community that has been in decline for decades, it`s so nice to see how much faith Wabtec has in investing in our community (shown). It`s a big relief and I think it`s a great day. Without the success and perseverance of the union, we would not have been able to get to where we are.
I applaud them very much. I think it`s a very good day for our community. Not surprisingly, union officials joined with municipal officials and Wabtec management to welcome the deal. Scott Slawson, president of EU Local 506, appeared with Greg Sbrocco, vice president of global operations at Wabtec, in an interview with the Erie Times News, saying: “I think both teams have worked very hard. I believe that we have reached a fair agreement. I think we have a bright future to work together,” he said, adding that the proposal “is something we can live with. We understand that there were things that needed to change. The deal, which will not be official unless ratified by union members on Wednesday, contains a number of improvements over the terms initially offered by Wabtec. The agreement represents concessions for each party, but also the promise of safety for the company`s Erie staff. On Thursday afternoon, officials representing Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies Corporation (Wabtec) and United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers (UE) reached an interim settlement for the 1,700 workers at the company`s locomotive plant in Erie, Pennsylvania. The deal, which is due to be ratified by a vote by members on Wednesday before it goes into effect, would create a two-tier wage system that would allow the company to keep new employees “on the progression” for years before payment for current employees is reached. In another demonstration of the EU`s submission to the profit needs of Wabtec, whose CEO Ray Betler received a total compensation of $5.3 million in 2018, the union kept workers at work even after the end of the 90-day transition period on Tuesday. Although Sbrocco said the company would continue to build locomotives and perform other work in Erie, the terms of the agreement provide that Wabtec will bring work to the Erie plant that is not currently being done there.