Nothing will stop Harley-Davidson from
being a profitable company, CEO Keith Wandell says — not even an
unhappy workforce. Which means they’ll get the big square-toed boot
if they don’t sign a new contract.
Wandell wrote a letter to the unionized
employees of H-D in Wisconsin last week stating that Harley is "on
a course to build a competitive company … and a business that is
sustainable long term." He added that "nothing can get in the way
of this objective."
Workers are set to vote on the new
seven-year contract today. It would stop pay raises, cut jobs, and
give work to part-time employees. Harley-Davidson says wages in
Wisconsin are too high and this contract is a necessary step in
turning the company around.
But it also said it would move its
engine manufacturing and other operations out of Wisconsin if the
workers don’t approve the contract. That would kick more than 1,000
employees out of work.
Results of the vote should be apparent by
this evening. For more, see the Associated Press story .