Boeing Workers Say UAW Deal Helps Their Contract Talks – SAG-AFTRA Close to Deal on AI

Machinists prepare for a major battle at Boeing in 2024 (IAM)

Greetings from the Burgh, where it is Election Day and even the attacks on Gaza are playing a big role in a major county election 

“Progressive” County Exec Candidate Refuses to Support Ceasefire

In May, Payday covered how progressive challenger 37-year-old Sara Innamorato, a former socialist, defeated a field of corporate Democrats in this past spring’s primary election to be the Democratic nominee for Allegheny County Executive. At the time, Payday Report warned that establishment figures were already creeping and trying to co-opt the progressive energy in Allegheny County. 

Now, in the midst of a competitive election, Innamorato has denounced both the local and national Democratic Socialist chapters for calling for a ceasefire in Gaza. 

“I strongly denounce the recent anti-Israel actions and statements of national and local DSA chapters, which coldly ignores the gruesome attacks on innocent Israelis,” Innamorato wrote on Twitter in October. “Israel has a right to defend itself while minimizing civilian casualties”. 

For more, check out WESA. 

Brazilian Workers Party Denounces Israel for Not Releasing Brazilian Citizens

This week, the Brazilian Workers Party, the party of President Lula, denounced the Israeli government for refusing to allow Brazilian citizens to leave Gaza through their border crossing in Rafah, Egypt. 

“For the third time, the Israeli government denied the departure of Brazilian citizens threatened by the massacre against the civilian population in the Gaza strip,” said Workers Party president Gleisi Hoffmann in a statement. “Unfortunately, the Israeli government signals that it has established a political hierarchy for the release of civilians, favoring some countries over others”. 

For more, check out Reuters. 

SAG-AFTRA & Studios Close to Deal on AI

For the past week, SAG-AFTRA and the major studios have been negotiating nearly every day and making progress but were unable to come to an agreement on the usage of artificial intelligence. 

Now, multiple publications are reporting that both the studios and SAG-AFTRA are making serious progress on AI. From Deadline: 

After SAG-AFTRA delivered its response on November 6 to the AMPTP’s so-called “last, best and final offer” of late last week, the parties got together for a Zoom meeting yesterday. Going late into the night, that meeting saw the CEO Gang of Four of Disney’s Bob Iger, Warner Bros Discovery’s David Zaslav, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos and NBCUniversal’s Donna Langley participating again. Unlike past such gatherings, the studio chiefs were eventually amenable to altering their latest proposal on AI to provide more project specific protections and compensations to performers, we hear.

Whether that shift is enough to bring an end to the bitter and costly six months of strike that have shut Hollywood down, cost the California economy $67.5 billion and seen 45,000 entertainment jobs disappear will likely be decided in the meeting between Crabtree-Ireland and Lombardini today.

“It’s all down to Duncan and Carol and smoothing out the AI language,” an insider declared. Also on the table is an agreement on minimum rates. SAG-AFTRA had wanted an 11% bump, the studios eventually offered 7% – which is better than what the WGA got in their strike ending deal back in September. The guild has since moved its ask to around 9% and the two sides are said to be settling somewhere around 8%, we hear.

Described by studio sources as “historic,” for what that’s worth, the November 3 offer from the AMPTP additionally includes, but is not limited to, a multi-decade wage increase, and a 100% raise in performance compensation bonuses for big-budget streaming series and movies that meet certain thresholds. The guild is said to have “issues” with those benchmarks, seeing them as too high to be meaningful to many of their members.

For more, check out Deadline. 

Boeing Workers Say UAW Deal Helps Their Contract Talks 

Finally, as the Machinists union prepares to negotiate a new union contract next year at Boeing, many workers say they are inspired by the success of UAW workers. From the Seattle Times: 

Holden indicated the union is considering the aggressive and highly effective new tactics of the United Auto Workers. This fall, the UAW forced big contract deals with the three major Detroit automakers by striking at selective plants instead of having the entire workforce walk out at once.

“We’re watching the UAW negotiations and strike very closely,” Holden said. “They’re doing some very creative things.”

This raises the novel prospect for Boeing of a similar tactic that could see many IAM members continue to work and be paid while selective stoppages cripple key jet programs, say the 737 MAX, where the planned production ramp-up is essential to Boeing’s cash flow, or the 777X, where major customers expect 2025 airplane deliveries after waiting years for their new widebody giants.

“There’s some possibilities,” Holden said pointedly. “We don’t all work in the same plant. We don’t all work the same job. We don’t all work on the same program.”

For more, check out the Seattle Times. 

Strikes & News Happening Elswehre 

Alright yinz, that’s all for today. Keep sending tips, story ideas, and comments to [email protected] 

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Love & Solidarity, 

Melkmachinist

About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter and alumni of the Guardian. A native of Pittsburgh, Elk grew up in a UE union family. Elk was the only American reporter in the room with Lula on the morning of the election & traveled with him to the Oval Office. Credited by the Washington Post for being the first reporter to track the strike wave systematically, Elk started Payday Report using his NLRB settlement from being illegally fired for union organizing in 2015. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and attended journalism school at PUC-Rio de Janeiro. He speaks both Portuguese and Pittsburgh fluently. His email is [email protected]