December 13, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Portland, OR – Just five months after workers at Commercial Aircraft Painting Services voted to join the International Association of Machinists, Boeing announced that it will not renew the company’s contract, forcing it to close.
CAPS lost its bid for a five-year deal to paint Boeing planes manufactured in Everett, Washington, to the French company STTS. It notified the state of Oregon Dec. 1 that its 147 union-represented workers will be laid off Jan. 31, 2017—the day the contract expires—and its 27 management employees within a month after that. CAPS workers voted July 8 to join Machinists District Lodge W24, and were negotiating their first union contract. They had been working 12-hour shifts, being switched from day to overnight every few weeks, and got paid slightly more than half what union Boeing painters got. STTS told CAPS workers Dec. 1 that it plans to recruit them. If it hires more than half of the current employees, federal labor law would require it to recognize the union. Read more