Briggs & Stratton workers ratify new four-year contract

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- More than 350 union workers from Briggs & Stratton voted to ratify a new four-year contract with the company on Wednesday, October 30th. The final vote was 268-82 in favor of the contract.

The terms of the contract include a zero-percent wage increase the first year, followed by two-percent raises each of the following three years.

Jesse Edwards, the president of the United Steelworkers Local 2232, says equally important, are three changes to the contract language. That includes a provision which indicates any new permanent work opportunities which the company brings to Milwaukee cannot be staffed by temps.

"Our issue with that was that we wanted to make sure that the company staffed those jobs with full-time employees," said Edwards.

Additionally, Edwards says any changes to the employee health benefits must now be discussed with the union.

Following the vote, Briggs & Stratton issued a statement which reads in part, "We felt this was a very fair and equitable offer and we look forward to continuing to work as a team on our future business goals and objectives."