Negotiations 101

In the News

November 20th, 2023


We know that labor negotiations are complicated. We want to provide you with a quick overview of what you can expect during this time. We want to equip you with some basic knowledge about the negotiations process and how/when we will update you on the progress.

The Process

  • Start
    • The company and union meet.
    • Both parties learn and talk about our shared goals for negotiations – during this time there won’t be any updates to share.


  • Proposals exchanged with ongoing discussions.
    •  During this phase of negotiations, both parties will be sharing ideas, questions, and concerns with each other and will exchange language and economic (wages, healthcare and pension/retirement benefits) proposals. This is where the most work takes place between the company’s and union’s bargaining committees.
    • Communication updates during this time may sometimes be repetitive, as there may not be a lot of new information available to share. We know this can be frustrating. Bargaining is about working through ideas and concerns and coming to a solution that is both good for our associates and the company. While both parties may agree on certain issues, it can take time to reach an overall agreement.
    • Our goal during negotiations is to share facts. During proposal exchanges, we do not have agreed upon solutions and all the facts to move forward with communicating our proposals. Remember during this phase, we are proposing ideas and solutions, and nothing is set in stone.
    • If there is misinformation or misrepresentation of the company’s proposals, we will set the record straight.


  • Tentative Agreement reached.
    • Once the bargaining committees have reached a tentative agreement, you will be notified by the company.
    • In every negotiation, our hope is that the union will fully recommend the agreement. However, for various reasons, the union may choose not to recommend or remain neutral.
    • However, we believe the union should provide you with an opportunity to vote on our offer.


  • Tentative Agreement voted.
    • If the union offers you the opportunity to vote, we strongly encourage you to attend the voting meeting.
    • Too often, associates do not vote on their contract and instead leave it to others to decide.
    • The union and company cannot make you vote and cannot make you vote one way or another if you decide to vote. The decision to accept or reject a proposal is all yours.
    • When it’s all said and done, the opinion that matters most is yours.  We recommend that you get all the facts, discuss the proposal with your friends and family and vote on what’s best for you and your situation.


  • Contract Ratified
    • Congratulations! The company suggests that this is the best possible outcome for you and your family.
    • If the contract doesn’t get approved by membership, there are many different scenarios in moving forward, including but not limited to, returning to the bargaining table.
    • Our goal is to come to an agreement and get a ratified contract as soon as possible.


More information 

If at any point during the negotiations process, you have additional questions or concerns, please talk to a member of management.


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