Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems Train on Whistleblowing

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Professional Engineers Focus on Whistleblower Training

On training sessions held by the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) local unions covering Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems workers, the spotlight is on equipping members with the necessary knowledge of rules and regulations related to whistleblowing. These sessions are crucial in light of recent events scrutinizing Boeing’s safety and quality standards.

Increased Scrutiny on Boeing

Boeing faces intense scrutiny following a door plug blowout incident on an Alaska Airlines-operated 737 Max 9 plane in January. In response to concerns raised by employees about how whistleblowers are treated within the company, Boeing has initiated meetings to gather feedback on its operational practices.

Mike Fleming, a senior vice president at Boeing Commercial Airplane, emphasized the company’s commitment to addressing issues promptly. He stated, “When we find issues, we go as far as standing down a team to ensure everyone is aware of the problem.”

Allegations of Retaliation

Longtime Boeing engineer Sam Salehpour has been vocal about potential defects in the 787 Dreamliner planes that could lead to mid-air structural failures. Despite Boeing denying these allegations, Salehpour claims he faced threats of termination and violence for speaking up. Similarly, Santiago Paredes, a former Spirit AeroSystems employee, alleged that he was demoted after raising concerns about 737 Max issues.

Both Boeing and Spirit AeroSystems assert a zero-tolerance policy against retaliation and encourage open communication from their employees.

Union Representation and Contracts

Of the 171,000 individuals employed by Boeing, 57,000 are union members, with SPEEA representing the second-largest group after the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The union represents 10% of all unionized Boeing employees and has negotiated separate contracts for “professional” and “technical” workers, set to expire in October 2026 as per the most recent 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

These developments underscore the importance of maintaining transparency, communication, and ethical standards within the aerospace industry to ensure the safety and well-being of all stakeholders involved.

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Chris Jones

Hey there! 👋 I'm Chris, 34 yo from Toronto (CA), I'm a journalist with a PhD in journalism and mass communication. For 5 years, I worked for some local publications as an envoy and reporter. Today, I work as 'content publisher' for InformOverload. 📰🌐 Passionate about global news, I cover a wide range of topics including technology, business, healthcare, sports, finance, and more. If you want to know more or interact with me, visit my social channels, or send me a message.
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