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Shuttle worker strike averted
Posted: Sun, Jun 10, 2001, 11:06 AM ET (1506 GMT)
Members of a union that represents a number of shuttle workers at the Kennedy Space Center approved a new contract Saturday, avoiding a strike that could have hampered shuttle launch preparations. Members of Local 2061 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers approved a new contract in a vote Saturday, a day after negotiators for the union and United Space Alliance (USA) reached a tentative agreement on the new deal. The union had threatened to walk out on Saturday if a new contract wasn't completed. The 600 members of the union, about 10 percent of the overall workforce at KSC, operate cranes and erect work platforms. USA officials said that even if the union had gone on strike shuttle operations would not be adversely affected, as non-striking workers and managers would have filled in. Union officials, on the other hand, were skeptical that their jobs could be so easily replaced if they had walked out.
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