Bargaining Update: August 31
Wabtec is pleased the UE members ratified the collective bargaining agreement. We look forward to having our employees back, working on the innovative technologies that help drive our customers’ success while also contributing to a cleaner planet. Together, we will continue to deliver on customer commitments.
One Wabtec, One Future
Today, Erie is an important part of Wabtec's Global Operations footprint and has a key role to play in the company's long term success. More productive, more efficient, more competitive: we can build upon the progress that's been made and keep moving Erie forward.
Wabtec Donates $124,000 to the United Way of Erie County
Wabtec is proud to support the United Way of Erie County and its mission to crush poverty. This $124,000 donation is the result of our 2022 United Way campaign where employee contributions are combined with a 50% match from the company. Through our Caring for Our Communities program, we are committed to improving the quality of life for those in need where we live, work, and serve.
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Prioritizing Your Financial Future
A reasonable compensation plan, like the one we have now, strikes a balance between paying employees well and keeping costs at a level that allows the business to thrive and grow. With our existing compensation plan, we’ve been able to recall former employees, externally hire for the first time in over a decade, and achieve positive financial results.
The Truth About Grievances
Wabtec has a good track record on recognizing valid grievances with employees. Over the course of our contract, more than 60% of grievances that have reached Step III have been resolved with an agreement between the company and the UE. Our goal in Step III is to make the right decision based on the contractual language and avoid arbitration.
Decision Tree: Which Plant Will Manufacture a New Order?
While getting new orders from customers is good for the company overall, the plants that complete the work benefit the most. To bring in work for Erie, we need to stay efficient, flexible and competitive.
Working at Wabtec Is a Smart Investment
Our competitive wage plan is a positive step for employees in the short and long term — and good for the company. Our starting competitive wage for new hires is already higher than the market median and Caterpillar’s grade one wage for workers — even after their recent raise.
Resolving Our Issues Together
Resolving grievances is inherently a difficult task — since it’s an attempt to find a solution to a disagreement. We’ve worked hard to create a grievance process that’s good for everyone. The good news is, it’s working.
Dependability in Today's Market
Wabtec has a long legacy in rail thanks to our ability to reliably deliver for the customer on time with high quality. We’re still committed to showing dependability in the way we always have, but one of the demands of the industry today is to deliver a wider array of technologies to meet our customer’s changing needs.
Hiring is on the Rise for Wabtec Erie
With Wabtec’s global success and the strength of the Erie facility, the company is investing directly into the community. Prior to Wabtec’s acquisition of GE Transportation, the plant was losing steam, with significant layoffs over several years. Now, Wabtec and Erie are succeeding and growing together.
Bigger than Employment
It’s easy to focus on how Wabtec directly supports its own employees with compensation and benefits, but the company also sustains the whole community in broader ways that indirectly benefit employees. Wabtec’s involvement in the Erie economy makes it a better place to live.
Collective Bargaining Updates
Bargaining Update: August 30
Wabtec and the leadership of the United Electrical Workers have reached a tentative agreement that preserves the industry-leading wage package currently enjoyed by the Erie workforce. The agreement provides wage increases, improves the grievance process, improves holidays and personal days for new employees, and transitions the Erie workforce to Wabtec’s standard employee benefits with additional benefits new to the union membership.
Wabtec is grateful to community leaders, policymakers, and elected representatives for their efforts in keeping both parties focused on the goal of resolving the strike situation. Wabtec joins the UE leadership in recommending the tentative agreement for approval by the membership.
Bargaining Update: August 17
Wabtec met with UE bargaining representatives this morning. The parties reached a tentative agreement on new language pertaining to vacation scheduling. Bargaining will resume on August 22-23.
Bargaining Update: August 8
The Company and the UE met for bargaining today and exchanged proposals with respect to vacation scheduling. The parties are holding Thursday, August 17 for additional meetings.
Bargaining Update: August 7
Wabtec and the UE, along with assistance of a federal mediator, are scheduled to meet Tuesday morning.
Bargaining Update: August 3
At 10 a.m. yesterday, the company met with the UE and the federal mediator, and the parties had a robust discussion regarding all seven outstanding issues. Part of that discussion focused on finding common ground on vacation scheduling, one of the seven outstanding items. The Union asked for a caucus to work on proposed language; however around 2:00 p.m., the union left for the day. Not having received any proposed language from the union last evening, the company sent draft language regarding vacation scheduling to the union this morning, for their consideration. Additional dates to meet have also been relayed to the union.
Bargaining Update #2: August 2
Wabtec was contacted by the federal mediator late this afternoon. The parties are scheduled to meet tomorrow at 10am.
Bargaining Update #1: August 1
Wabtec contacted the UE and informed them of its availability to meet on Wednesday. Wabtec further informed the union that exchanging full proposals was not working for either party and suggested that the upcoming discussions be focused on the remaining open issues, both economic and non-economic. The Company was looking forward to a candid and productive discussion on Wednesday, however, the union did not respond to Wabtec’s offer to meet. We want to emphasize that Wabtec remains available to meet with the union all day on Wednesday and is open to providing additional dates to meet in the future.
Bargaining Update: July 26
Wabtec met with the UE today to continue negotiations for a new agreement. During the meeting, the Company presented the Union with a letter outlining its position on the remaining seven open economic and non-economic issues. The parties met together, and then separately with the Federal mediator to resolve these issues; however, the Union provided no response to the Company’s letter. Before 2:00 p.m., Wabtec was surprised to learn that the UE team had left for the day while the Company’s bargaining team was awaiting the Union’s response. The UE also left without providing any future available dates for continued discussions. Wabtec supplied our available dates to meet. The Erie facility continues to remain open for business and all Wabtec employees are welcome to return to work.
Bargaining Update: July 14
Wabtec met with the UE this morning. The UE presented a new proposal which slightly reduced their wage demands and made no movement on any other issues. Negotiations will resume on July 26.
Bargaining Update: July 11
Today, Wabtec presented its response to the UE’s first strike settlement proposal, offering increases in hourly wage rates offset by reduced lump sum payments. The UE’s July 6 proposal reflected little movement from the union’s pre-strike position, and the parties remain far apart on key issues – including wages and benefits. The UE did not respond to the Company’s latest proposal. Negotiations will resume on Friday, July 14.
Bargaining Update: July 6
The parties met today with the assistance of the federal mediator. At the end of today’s meetings, the Union verbally presented its first strike settlement proposal. The parties remain far apart on some key issues. Wabtec is considering the Union’s proposals and preparing a comprehensive written response. The parties are scheduled to meet again on Tuesday, July 11.
Bargaining Update: June 26
Today, Wabtec responded to the June 24, 2023 "Strike Bulletin" posted by UE Local 506 on its webpage. The Company sent a letter to UE 506 leadership and posted a copy of it below.
Bargaining Update: June 22
Wabtec was informed earlier this evening that UE Locals 506 and 618 voted against ratification of the Company’s most recent proposal and have authorized a strike. Below, Wabtec posted a company statement and FAQ document for employees.
Bargaining Update: June 20
Today, Wabtec shared details of its June 10, 2023 proposal prior to the UE ratification vote. Wabtec also confirmed that the subcontracting notice will be withdrawn upon ratification of a new agreement.
Bargaining Update: June 19
Today, Wabtec posted a letter to employees from Joe Cavalier.
Bargaining Update: June 14
Wabtec distributed a summary of the economic highlights of the Company’s June 10, 2023 proposal.
Bargaining Update: June 10
Saturday June 10th, the parties continued negotiations. At the end of the day, the UE informed the Company that it would put the Company’s most recent offer up for a vote by the membership on June 22nd.
Bargaining Update: June 9
The parties worked with the Federal Mediator today to resolve our differences before contract expiration. Although the parties made significant progress in doing so, the parties agreed to briefly extend the current CBA to provide additional time for negotiations. Negotiations will continue Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m.
Bargaining Update: June 8
The Company provided a comprehensive proposal to the UE today. The parties began working with a Federal mediator this morning and negotiations are continuing this evening.
Bargaining Update: June 7
Little progress was made in negotiations today. Wabtec and the UE exchanged comprehensive proposals. Some agreements were reached on non-economic issues, but the parties remain far apart on economic issues. Negotiations will continue tomorrow.
Bargaining Update: June 6
Today, the Company and UE continued to narrow the issues and reached some additional tentative agreements, but the parties remain far apart on economics. Negotiations will resume tomorrow morning.
Bargaining Update: June 5
Today, the parties reviewed all open non-economic issues. The Company presented a response to the Union’s proposal regarding leaves of absence. The Union presented no new proposals.
Bargaining Update: June 2
Today, the Company presented a comprehensive proposal to resolve all open issues. The Company expects the UE’s response on Monday.
Bargaining Update: June 1
Wabtec and the UE met briefly today, exchanged proposals and reached tentative agreement on some non-economic issues. Little progress was made on closing the gap between the parties’ economic proposals.
Bargaining Update: May 31
Today, the Company informed the UE that the union’s wage proposals are prohibitively expensive, and the Company maintained its current position on wage and benefit improvements. Despite these significant differences, Wabtec reaffirmed its commitment to reaching a new agreement that positions the Erie plant for future success.
Bargaining Update: May 25
After a month of bargaining, the UE has presented all of its non-economic proposals as well as its first complete economic proposal. The Company is studying the UE’s proposals and will respond when negotiations resume after the holiday weekend
Bargaining Update: May 24
Today’s negotiations focused on economics. Wabtec made a presentation on employee benefits and responded to the UE’s proposal on severance. While the UE did not provide new proposals, they informed the Company that the union would provide a complete proposal on wages, benefits and other economic items at the meeting tomorrow.
Bargaining Update: May 23
Negotiations continued today as Wabtec and the UE exchanged proposals on several non-economic provisions and reached additional tentative agreements. To date, the parties have reached over 20 tentative agreements on non-economic issues. The Company is still waiting on a full economic proposal from the UE.
Bargaining Update: May 19
Productive negotiations continued today. The parties exchanged proposals and reached some tentative agreements as they narrowed in on specific issues. Negotiations will resume on Tuesday, May 23.
Bargaining Update: May 17
Wabtec had another productive day in negotiations with the UE today. Both parties exchanged non-economic proposals, and tentative agreements were reached on a number of issues. As of today, the parties have reached tentative agreements on 16 different non-economic proposals. At the end of the meeting, the Union presented its first economic proposals, seeking increases in severance payments, supplemental unemployment benefits, and safety shoe reimbursements. Negotiations will continue on Friday, as the UE bargaining team is unavailable tomorrow due to a membership meeting.
Bargaining Update: May 15
Negotiations continued in a 30-minute meeting today, with the company providing a complete, 15-page response to all open issues. The UE did not present any new information and no agreements were reached.
Bargaining Update: May 5
After seven days of negotiation meetings, progress towards finalizing a new agreement continues to be slow. UE Locals 506 and 618 have not yet provided Wabtec all of their non-economic proposals and have not responded to the company’s April 27 proposal on wages and benefits. Negotiations will resume on May 15.
Bargaining Update: May 2
Wabtec and the UE are continuing discussions this week. Check back here for important updates and information, which we'll post as things develop.
Bargaining Update: April 28
Wabtec and the UE had a productive start to negotiations, with both parties showing interest in having a better relationship and more open communication. See below for links to the initial proposals from the company and the union that were introduced in the initial stages of bargaining.
As new contract negotiations progress, a few points of discussion have been raised, and we want you to have all the relevant information. The Erie Times-News recently published a story previewing the talks, but there’s more that we’d like employees to know
Wabtec to honor arbitrator's decision because the grievance process doesn’t just work when the company wins.
When we thrive, so does Erie. Together we all play an important role in contributing to the growth and vitality of the region.
How do we make Erie the most competitive plant in Wabtec, so that when it comes time for the company to decide where to source an order it chooses Erie?