Strike ends at Stennis Space Center

STENNIS SPACE CENTER, MS (WLOX) - After five days on strike, members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers 2249 will be back on the job at Stennis Space Center Wednesday morning. Tuesday, union representatives reached an agreement with Lockheed Martin on a new contract.

Workers had been picketing two gates at Stennis since Friday because of Lockheed Martin's plan to convert their pension plans to 401K retirement plans.

We're told the new contract includes improvements to wages and benefits, but still replaces the pension plan with a 401k retirement plan.

Union reps say many members wanted to end the strike quickly, and they'll take up the issue of retirement security in the next round of negotiations.

"We've had a pension plan at Stennis since 1977 and it's important not only to retirees, but for the overall economy of this community," said Local 2249 President J.C. Felder. "Despite the outcome of today's vote, we'll continue the fight for good jobs at Stennis with secure retirement provisions."

Lockheed Martin released a statement Tuesday saying, " We're pleased that the union members voted to accept the company's last, best and final offer, and will return to work by Wednesday, May 21. The ratification of this new, three-year contract is excellent news for our company, the represented employees, their communities and the customer."

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