Because the developing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been declared a national emergency and is certain to affect every IAM-represented workplace, the Machinists Union has issued an important memorandum for bargaining with employers.
Employers are required to bargain with unions over this matter, and it is essential for IAM leaders to ensure they are developing appropriate plans to respond to this crisis. The IAM has both the legal right to be involved in these plans. We have the responsibility to do so, in order to protect the health of the employees we represent, their families and the communities in which they live.
Because of the importance and urgency of this crisis, every IAM affiliate should follow the following steps outlined in the memorandum for each employer with which it has a collective-bargaining relationship.
Every employer with whom the IAM has a collective-bargaining relationship should be developing plans in cooperation with the union to respond to the crisis, to protect the health and safety of all employees, as well as the general public.