A labor dispute hitting one of the world’s largest equipment manufacturers during the height of the American grain harvest might be coming to an end.
John Deere and the leaders of the union representing the company’s employees both said Saturday a deal has been reached between the two groups. John Deere members of the International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) will now vote on the tentative agreement.
A John Deere statement describes the deal as “a new six-year labor agreement covering approximately 10,100 production and maintenance employees at 12 facilities in Iowa, Illinois, and Kansas. A separate deal would also cover nearly 100 production and maintenance employees at parts facilities in Denver and Atlanta.
The deal represents the second tentative agreement reached between John Deere and UAW leaders. A previous deal was rejected by John Deere employees, who instead opted to strike earlier this month.
“Our UAW John Deere national bargaining team went back to our local members after the previous tentative agreement and canvassed the concerns and priorities of membership.” UAW President Ray Curry said in a statement. “We want to thank the UAW bargaining team and striking UAW members and their families for the sacrifices they have made to achieve these gains.”
UAW said it would not release details of the agreement before members at John Deere facilities have the opportunity to meet and review it. But Chuck Browning, UAW’s vice president and director of the agricultural implement department, pointed to better economic and health care benefits in the deal, saying the negotiations “focused on improving the areas of concern identified by our members during our last ratification process.”
UAW will now conduct a ratification vote on the new tentative agreement.
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