Airbus may drop lithium batteries from A350; BCA CEO appeals to SPEEA members
A switch to standard batteries would delay the A350 program by a couple of months, reports Bloomberg–but another delay has been expected by customers anyway, who previously told us they believe the first delivery will be at the end of 2014 or early 2015 rather than the mid-2014 previously announced by Airbus.
Bombardier is using Nickel-Cadmium batteries for the CSeries.
Meantime, Boeing acknowledged the obvious: 787 deliveries will be delayed.
BCA CEO appeals to SPEEA: Ballots have gone out from SPEEA leaders to the membership recommending rejection of the Boeing contract offer and authorization for a strike. Boeing sent the following message to SPEEA members:
It’s time to come together
I believe we’ve made an offer that recognizes the tremendous contributions and skills that our engineers and technical employees bring to BCA, BDS, EO&T and SSG. The SPEEA negotiating team asked us to extend the terms of the current contract another four years. We did that in our best and final offer.
Based on some of the questions and concerns raised in the emails I received, I want to clarify a few points:
- There are no changes to your pension plan in this offer, and Boeing cannot make changes in the future unless ratified by members in a contract – it’s that simple.
- This offer guarantees a 5 percent salary pool for each year of the contract. Boeing executives, non-union and other union-represented employees have a 3 percent salary pool.
- In the prior contract, SPEEA-represented employees paid 10 percent of their medical costs. This is unchanged in our final offer. Boeing executives and all non-union employees pay 20 percent of the costs.
Future employees would be part of an enhanced retirement savings plan that would exceed anything offered by our aerospace peers. I can’t stress enough how important this move for new hires is to our company’s future. Getting a better handle on our pension costs now will enable us to do more amazing things in the future like the 777X and the 787-10X.
The proposed retirement plan is similar to plans that have been in effect for new hires in other parts of Boeing since 2009. Every potential employee has a choice to either join or not join the Boeing team. Since implementing that change, we have not seen any impact to our recruitment and retention efforts.
As you know, we are facing challenges on the 787 program. It was your innovation, talent and skill that brought the 787 Dreamliner to life, along with so many other market-leading products and services we’ve promised our customers. Now more than ever, we need to deliver on those promises by coming together as one team.
Nobody wins in a strike. While hurting Boeing and our employees, it would also impact our customers who’ve put their trust in Boeing’s people and products. It’s important that we protect our competitiveness in the long-run, even if that means some short-term pain.
We have so much opportunity ahead of us. Together, we can continue to build our reputation as the best aerospace company in the world. We can do anything together, including emerging from our recent difficulties with the 787.
If you haven’t already, I encourage you to review the contract on our website.
This is a contract for your future, and I hope that you will vote to ratify it. Most of all, I hope you take the opportunity to vote.