York H-D union agrees to huge job cuts

Jobs sacrificed in bid to save factory

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Dec. 02, 2009
Workers at Harley-Davidsonís York, Pa., plant have agreed to a new contract that would cut the number of jobs in half.

The new seven-year contract will reduce the York plantís workforce to 1,000 workers from its current level of 1,950 employees. The agreement was ratified by a vote of 1,587 to 193, meaning hundreds of workers voted for a deal that may cost them their jobs. Workers may have been faced with little choice however as voting for the deal may prevent the closure of the entire plant.

Kentucky state officials have been trying to convince Harley-Davidson to move relocate production from York to a 214-acre parcel in Shelby County, Ky. The York plant needed to make dramatic cuts in order to convince Harley-Davidson to stay.

The union also concedes health benefits and control over work schedules in the new agreement.

Harley-Davidson workers opted to sacrifice jobs to save the factory in York, Pa.

The new contact is no guarantee that Harley-Davidson will stay in Pennsylvania, however. The Motor Company is expected to make a final decision on the York plant by Dec. 10 and may still decide to relocate.

The York plant has already undergone heavy job cuts in the last year, going from 2,800 workers to 1,950. The plant is Harley-Davidsonís largest manufacturing facility, producing the companyís Touring and Softail models.