This Monday morning September 13th, Milwaukee area Harley-Davidson union members approved by a small margin the new seven-year labor contracts proposed to them by the direction, with for consequence that Harley will probably not move production to another state but for sure will get rid of more than 200 employees replaced by seasonal workers.
The decision that Harley-Davidson employees had to face was extremely difficult, choosing between being certain to lose their jobs in the Milwaukee area, or accepting a big reduction of their workforce and wondering if they are going to lose it in the next months.
The Harley’s board of directors will meet tomorrow Tuesday morning September 14th to decide whether to keep manufacturing in Wisconsin or move out of state. During labor contract negotiations, the company has declared it would not move its plants (Milwaukee & Tomahawk operations) if the unions approve the new contracts scheduled to take effect in 2012. Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle made a public statement stating that keeping the company in the state has been a top priority and announced that he has offered Harley-Davidson a very competitive incentive package. Employees can continue to wonder if and when they will lose their job. Is a slow death better? Ratifying this contract is a no win solution for anyone but management state many workers.
Now, if you want to form your opinion, I recommend that you read the following excellent article. Are Harley Cuts A Case Of Need Or Greed?