AWPPW rejects GP/Koch Industries contract offer
Updated On: Aug 09, 2017

AWPPW rejects GP/Koch Industries contract offer


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AWPPW

19:04 ET


PORTLAND, Ore., Aug. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers (AWPPW) Local 5 and Georgia Pacific (GP), wholly owned by Koch Industries, have been in contract negotiations for over 3 years, as the labor agreement expired May 31, 2014. AWPPW Local 5, located in Camas Washington, overwhelmingly rejected a contract offer that was voted on by the members, simultaneously giving strike authorization. It is likely that customers such as Wal-Mart, Costco, Staples and Kroger's would have supplies affected should a labor dispute arise at the GP facility.

Establishing a "Two-Tier" society - The Company offer proposed that employees hired after ratification would come under a new wage rate scale that reduces wages an average of 20%. New hires would not be eligible for any General Wage Increases (GWI's). New employees would not be eligible for the defined benefit pension plan, they would have fewer holidays, and vacation pay would be reduced.

As part of GP's proposal, current employees would receive GWI's on average 1% per year, which is far less than the 2.5% industry average.  The company's proposal contains language that allows for contracting out of all work, maintenance as well as production. The proposal replaces current health care plans with plans that reduce benefits and have high deductibles. This shifts the burden to the employees to cover their health care.

This proposal establishes a two-tier wage system that would cut wages and benefits for the workers, while Georgia Pacific continues to make record profits for parent company Koch Industries. 

In a Washington Post article dated February 18, 2016, Charles Koch speaks against a two-tier society in America.  His company, however, appears to be leading the way to creating its own two-tier society amongst its employees, reviving the term, "Indentured Servant".

The Union and the Company are scheduled to meet again on August 16, 2017.

The AWPPW is affiliated with the United Brotherhood of the Carpenters & Joiners of America (UBC).

For more information contact AWPPW President Greg Pallesen at 503-228-7486 gpallesen@awppw.org

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/charles-koch-this-is-the-one-issue-where-bernie-sanders-is-right/2016/02/18/cdd2c228-d5c1-11e5-be55-2cc3c1e4b76b_story.html

SOURCE AWPPW

Related Links

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