Labor Terms

Bargaining Unit
A group of workers who bargain collectively with the employer. The unit may include all the workers in a single location or in a number of locations. Final unit is determined by the NLRB or agreed to jointly by the union and the employer. The bargaining unit for this contract consist of over 6,700 production employees at our Decatur, East Peoria, Mapleton, Mossville, Morton, Pontiac and York, PA facilities.

Base Rate
The straight time rate of pay, excluding premiums and incentive bonuses. The average base rate for employees under this contract is $22.85 per hour.

Collective Bargaining
A process which workers, through their union representatives, bargain as a group with their employer to determine wages, hours and other conditions of employment. Normally, the result of collective bargaining is a written contract that covers all workers in the bargaining unit whether or not they are union members.

Duty of Fair Representation (DFR)
A union’s obligation to represent all people in the bargaining unit as fairly and equally as possible. This requirement applies both in the creation and interpretation of collective bargaining agreements. A union is said to have violated its Duty of Fair Representation when a union’s conduct toward a member of a collective bargaining unit is arbitrary, discriminatory or in bad faith.

Agreement by Caterpillar and the UAW to extend the current agreement to continue negotiations.

Good Faith Bargaining
Negotiations in which two parties meet and confer at reasonable times with open minds and the intention of reaching agreement over a new contract. Bargaining in good faith does not require either party to accept the proposals of the other party. It requires that both parties meet and negotiate and make effort to reach an agreement.  

In general usage, a term referring to a situation where two parties cannot agree on a solution to a dispute. In collective bargaining, if impasse is reached, the employer is legally permitted to unilaterally impose its latest offer.

Informational Picketing
Picketing done with the express intent not to cause a work stoppage, but to publicize either the existence of a labor dispute or information concerning the dispute.

A court order which either party imposes restraints upon action or directs that a specific action be taken and which is, in either case, backed by the court's power to hold disobedient parties in contempt.

Decision by Caterpillar to prohibit employees from reporting to work.

Market-based Wages
Our process to review wages in the labor market and adjust wages to ensure we are offering competitive wages for our production roles. 

National Labor Relations Act of 1935 (NLRA)
Federal law guaranteeing workers the right to establish unions and to participate in protected concerted activities. This act provides the right to participate in a strike. It also provides the right to not participate in a strike.

National Labor Relations Board (NLRB)
Agency created by the National Labor Relations Act in 1935 to define appropriate bargaining units, hold elections, determine whether a majority of workers want to be represented by a specific union or no union, certify unions to represent employees, interpret and apply the Act’s provisions prohibiting certain employer and union unfair practices and otherwise administer the provisions of the Act.

Permanent Replacements
Under current labor law, when employees engage in an economic strike, the employer has the right to hire permanent replacements. After the strike has ended, if there is specific agreement reached between the union and the employer, employees replaced during the strike are put on a preferential hiring list and must wait for openings to occur. If the object of a strike is to obtain from the employer an economic concession such as higher wages, shorter hours, or better working conditions, the strike is called an economic strike.

Vote held by employees on whether to accept a tentative agreement.

Decision by the UAW to ask employees to stop reporting for work. Employees have an equal right to participate in a strike or elect to continue to report to work.

Strike Authorization Vote
A vote taken by the members of a union (often before bargaining is concluded) giving the union the full authority to determine if a strike is to be called, and if so, its duration.

Strike Sanction
In order for a local union to receive strike benefits from the UAW, the strike must be sanctioned by the General Executive Board.

Tentative Agreement (TA)
Agreement reached between Caterpillar and the UAW subject to ratification by employees.

Working Without an Agreement
Employees may work without an agreement when a contract expires with no formal extension agreement in place, and when no strike or lockout has been called. Employees continue to work under the terms of the expired agreement.

We aim to reach an agreement that positions Caterpillar, our facilities
and our employees to compete and succeed long into the future.

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