Striking Workers Vote To Accept New Contract With Northrop Grumman

Thousands of Northrop Grumman workers will soon head back to work. On Wednesday, union members voted to accept a new contract with the shipbuilder.

But not everyone is happy with the new deal. WLOX has learned the overall vote was just 60 percent to 40 percent in favor of the new contract.

Many union members said it was the price of health care that made them decide to vote "no." The new contract offers no new coverage, and higher premiums.

"They claim we are one of the best yards in the world. Be proud of us, show us. A lot of children around here have trouble getting vision and dental and their parents work at the shipyard. That does not make any sense, that our company can not give us that with our insurance, but they are quick to raise it," Raven Taylor said.

Others said they were happy with the work union leaders did on their behalf at the negotiating table.

"I think they did a very good job to get this handled," Jennifer Kelly said. "The thing that made me say 'yes' is they increase the vacation rates for one to four year apprentices."

Northrop Grumman officials are happy to get their workforce back. The company released a statement Wednesday night saying, "We are pleased that the contract was ratified, and we stand ready to get back to full production in Pascagoula. The last few weeks have been difficult for our employees, our company and our communities. Now, we must join together to build on -- and improve -- our future."

Click here to see complete details on the new Northrop Grumman contract.

The picket line was taken down Wednesday night. Workers have the option of returning to Northrop Grumman Thursday or Tuesday.