The strike at Eaton Corporation-Cobham Mission Systems in Davenport ended Tuesday, March 22, after union workers ratified a new contract.
After a 33-day strike and rejecting two previous contracts, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) approved a five-year contract with Eaton.
The news was announced early evening in a news release from IAM, which said: “A strike has ended for more than 400 Machinists Union Local 388 and Local 1191 (District 6) members who work at Eaton Mission Systems Division of Davenport. The new contract includes improved wages and other items that will positively affect our members, their families and the community.”
Katie Kennedy, senior manager of communications and marketing communications for Eaton-Cobham, also confirmed the new contract between the Davenport plant and the union. “We are pleased to have reached a mutually satisfactory agreement, and we look forward to having the employees who were on strike return to work to continue serving our customers and our community,” she said in a statement emailed to the QCBJ.
Union workers with IAM Local 388, Davenport, and IAM Local 1191, based in Moline, went out on strike Friday, Feb. 18, after rejecting the company’s initial proposal. The union also turned down a second proposal on Friday, March 4.
“We are proud of our members for standing strong and fighting for a contract to improve their lives,” IAM said in its release. “Our members build world-class products at Eaton Mission Systems. They look forward to getting back to work beginning tomorrow. We want to thank the Quad Cities community for their commitment and support during this process.”
Ms. Kennedy also expressed appreciation from Eaton “to the Davenport employees who went above and beyond to ensure we were able to continue to operate safely and deliver quality products to meet our customer commitments while a significant portion of the workforce was on strike the past 33 days.”
Eaton Corporation acquired the former Cobham Mission Systems last year. The company, located in northwest Davenport, manufactures air-to-air refueling systems, environment systems and actuation, primarily for defense markets, according to its website. It employs a total workforce of about 950 people in the Quad Cities.
The contract resolution comes a week after the company announced it had hired 20 permanent replacement workers and that 55 union members had returned to work. However, at least one union official denied that 55 of its members were back on the job.