Strikes Loom as US Army, German Union at Odds Over New Contract

Labor News

More than 70 civilian employees of the US Army in Katterbach, Germany, went on strike and protested for higher wages in September 2017. Talks between the Army and the union representing German base workers have broken down, again raising the possibility of strikes. PETRA FICHTNER

Reprinted from Stars and Stripes by John VanDiver and Marcus Kloeckner on November 28, 2019.

Negotiations between the US Army and the union representing Germans employed on bases in Europe have broken down without an agreement on a new contract, raising the prospect of local workers going on strike.

“At this point, we could see strikes,” said Suzanne Torres, US Army Europe’s assistant deputy chief of staff for civilian personnel. “It’s within their right to do so.”

The stalemate comes at a time of uncertainty for the Army, which is operating under a continuing resolution and could face a financial crisis if Congress is unable to agree on a budget in the coming weeks.

If a deal isn’t reached soon with the local workers, the Army may be forced to scale back its current offer, USAREUR said. Budget uncertainty could affect future pay negotiations with German workers, it said. …

Stars and Stripes 11/28

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About Jeffrey Burman 5205 Articles
Jeff Burman served on the Guild’s Board of Directors from 1992 to 2019. He is now retired. He can be reached at jeffrey.s.burman.57@gmail.com.

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