Union Approves New CUNA MutualContract

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MADISON, Wis. - (06/17/05) -- The employees union at CUNA MutualGroup voted overwhelmingly Thursday night to ratify a new laboragreement, ending one of the longest and most bitter contractnegotiations in the company's history. The rank and file of theOffice and Professional Employees International Union, Local 39,voted 622-to-183 for a four-year pact with average pay raises of 4%a year, ending a 15-month impasse between the two sides. Under theagreement, the 1,360 employees of the Local 39 will receiveretroactive pay hikes dating back to last October and will work aslightly longer paid work week. The contract will also allow thecompany to outsource some of its work--one of the biggest stickingpoints in the labor dispute--in exchange for severance payments,outplacement assistance and health insurance for affected workers.The new pact will also reduce the options for employee healthbenefits and raise their deductible payments.

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