Airplane fuselages bound for Boeing’s 737 Max production facility await shipment on rail sidings at their top supplier, Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc, in Wichita, Kansas, U.S. December 17, 2019.
Nick Oxford | Reuters
Boeing supplier Spirit AeroSystems halted work at a Wichita, Kansas, plant on Thursday after workers voted against a new labor deal and for a strike. Spirit makes fuselages for Boeing’s 737 Max and pylons for Airbus A220s at the plant.
“In light of the decision to strike by Spirit AeroSystems employees represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers today, Spirit will suspend factory production prior to the expiration of the contract,” Spirit said.
The production halt began with the first shift on Thursday, two days before the contract covering roughly 6,000 workers is set to expire. The strike is scheduled to begin just after midnight on Saturday, the union said.
“The IAM’s dedicated and hardworking membership at Spirit AeroSystems has worked without fail during tumultuous times, including a pandemic that saw everything grind to a halt,” the union said in a statement. “Most of our members have concluded that the company’s offer is unacceptable. IAM District 70 and Local 839 will regroup and begin planning the following steps to bring the company back to the table.”
Spirit shares were down nearly 12% in early trading, while Boeing’s were off about 3%.
“We continue to monitor the situation and support our valued supplier,” Boeing said in a statement.