Goodyear, union workers extend contract deadline for 24 hours

Goodyear workers in Topeka and three other plants nationwide have extended their contract for another 24 hours.
Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 2:33 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Goodyear workers in Topeka and three other plants nationwide have extended their contract for another 24 hours.

A five-year master contract agreement between Goodyear and the United Steelworkers Union was set to expire at 5 p.m. CT Friday, July 29, 2022.

A message calling for a ‘fair contract’ has been projected on a tree outside the plant on Hwy. 24 in North Topeka for several nights over the past month.

The contract covers around 6,000 workers in Topeka; Akron, Ohio; Danville, VA; and Fayetteville, NC.

A Goodyear negotiations website lists key issues such as productivity, operational flexibility and health care costs.

“Like many American manufacturing companies whose products must compete in a global market, cost is a significant challenge for Goodyear. Goodyear’s goal in negotiations is to achieve a contract that improves its competitive position by addressing issues related to productivity and flexibility improvements in its factories, as well as health care benefits costs,” the company states on its site.

But a union website updating talks says any pay raise the company has offered is wiped out by passing along health care and benefits costs. The union points out Goodyear reported a $900 million profit in 2021 and can afford a better offer. They also cite issues such as training and making workers use vacation time during a plant shutdown.

“We are prepared to negotiate a responsible settlement, but we are not buying into the Company’s demands for concessions or a contract that does not reward essential workers for our contributions to the company’s success,” the union wrote on its website.

If no tentative agreement is reached before the contract expires, workers could strike or agree to work day-to-day under their current deal.

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