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National Collective Bargaining Agreement

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NATIONAL COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT


By and Between:


LIZ CLAIBORNE, INC. AND


UNION OF NEEDLETRADES, INDUSTRIAL AND TEXTILE EMPLOYEES


(UNITE)


Effective: June 1, 2000 Expires: May 31, 2003


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TABLE OF CONTENTS


ARTICLE 1: UNION RESPONSIBILITY - 2 -


ARTICLE 2: BARGAINING UNIT AND UNION RECOGNITION - 3 -


ARTICLE 3: UNION MEMBERSHIP - 4 -


ARTICLE 4: EMPLOYER'S OBLIGATIONS - 6 -


ARTICLE 5: AFTER ACQUIRED AND NEW FACILITIES - 6 -


ARTICLE 6: TRIAL PERIOD - 7 -


ARTICLE 7: HIRING RATES AND MINIMUM WAGE SCALES - 8 -


ARTICLE 8: CHANGE IN LEGAL MINIMUMS - 8 -


ARTICLE 9: COST OF LIVING ADJUSTMENT - 9 -


ARTICLE 10: JOB SECURITY/HANDLING AND DISTRIBUTION OF PRODUCT - 10 -


ARTICLE 11: CHANGE IN PAY SYSTEMS - 11 -


ARTICLE 12: WAGE INCREASES - 11 -


ARTICLE 13: CHECK-OFF - 12 -


ARTICLE 14: NO DISCRIMINATION - 12 -


ARTICLE 15: EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS - 13 -


ARTICLE 16: HEALTH AND SAFETY - 14 -


ARTICLE 17: HOURS OF WORK AND OVERTIME - 15 -


ARTICLE 18: TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES - 15 -


ARTICLE 19: HOLIDAYS, PERSONAL DAYS/PAID TIME OFF AND SICK DAYS - 16 -


ARTICLE 20: BEREAVEMENT LEAVE - 18 -


ARTICLE 21: SHOP STEWARD - 18 -


ARTICLE 22: SENIORITY/LAYOFF - 18 -


ARTICLE 23: WORK ASSIGNMENTS - 19 -


ARTICLE 24: DISCHARGES - 19 -


ARTICLE 25: LEAVES OF ABSENCE - 19 -


ARTICLE 26: TIME CLOCK - 21 -


ARTICLE 27: RIGHT TO VISIT SHOP - 22 -


ARTICLE 28: EMPLOYEE BENEFIT FUNDS - 22 -


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ARTICLE 30: GRIEVANCES AND ARBITRATION - 30 -


ARTICLE 31: NO STRIKE/NO LOCKOUT PLEDGES - 33 -


ARTICLE 32: NO REDUCTION OF WAGES OR OTHER BENEFITS - 33 -


ARTICLE 33: STRUCK WORK-LABOR DISPUTE CROSSING PICKET LINES - 34 -


ARTICLE 34: TEMPORARY APPOINTMENT TO UNION STAFF - 35 -


ARTICLE 35: CONFORMITY TO LAW - 35 -


ARTICLE 36: JURY DUTY - 35 -


ARTICLE 37: UNION ACTIVITIES - 36 -


ARTICLE 38: JOINT LABOR-MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE - 36 -


ARTICLE 39: VACATIONS - 36 -


ARTICLE 40: CUTTING - 37 -


ARTICLE 41: REPORTING PAY - 37 -


ARTICLE 42: NO WAIVER - 37 -


ARTICLE 43: MANAGEMENT RIGHTS - 37 -


ARTICLE 44: DURATION OF AGREEMENT - 38 - 4


THIS AGREEMENT is made and entered into as of June 1, 2000 by and between LIZ CLAIBORNE INC., (hereinafter designated as the "Company") and the Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employee (hereinafter designated as the "Union" or UNITE").
W I T N E S S E T H:
WHEREAS, the Company is engaged in an integrated process of production, handling and distribution of garments; and
WHEREAS, the Employer owns or leases and operates several distribution centers and samplerooms in which the Union represents the majority of the employees employed by the Employer, and the Employer recognizes the Union as the exclusive bargaining representative of its warehouse and sampleroom employees; and
WHEREAS, the various distribution centers and samplerooms have been governed by separate collective bargaining agreements covering individual facilities; and
WHEREAS, to provide uniformity of conditions and ease of administration, the parties choose to consolidate the separate bargaining units and collective bargaining agreements into a national multi-plant agreement, to be supplemented by local agreements covering specific facilities; and
WHEREAS, the Employer and the Union are parties to a Jobber's Agreement which governs, among other things, the Employer's use of contractors to produce its garments but does not govern the terms and conditions of employment of any of the employees of the Employer; and
WHEREAS, the parties desire to cooperate in establishing conditions which will tend to secure a living wage, fair conditions and standards of employment and to provide for a fair and peaceful adjustment of all disputes so as to secure uninterrupted operation of work.
NOW, THEREFORE, the parties hereto agree as follows:


ARTICLE 1: UNION RESPONSIBILITY 5


The Union shall have the sole responsibility for administering and enforcing this Agreement and for obtaining compliance with its terms. The sole persons authorized or having the power to act as agents of the Union, or to bind the Union legally with respect to matters arising out of this Agreement or arising out of the relations between the Employer and the Union, or to subject the Union to any liability whatever by reason of any acts or omissions is the President of the Union and the managers of the signatory Locals thereof or such substitute or additional persons as the Union may hereafter formally designate by written notice to the Employer. The Union shall not be responsible for the acts or omissions of any other person, including members and employees of the Union.


ARTICLE 2: BARGAINING UNIT AND UNION
RECOGNITION


2.1 The scope of the bargaining unit covers the following distribution centers and samplerooms presently located at:


1 Claiborne Avenue, North Bergen, NJ 4 Emerson Lane, Secaucus, New Jersey 10 Oxford Drive, Moonachie, New Jersey 1441 Broadway and 1450 Broadway, New York, New York 1 Liz Way, Mt. Pocono, Pennsylvania, including Pocono 2 151 Folmer Parkway, Montgomery, Alabama 15 Thatcher Road, Dayton, New Jersey 1015 Newman Avenue, Seekonk, Massachusetts 120 Herrod Boulevard, Dayton, New Jersey


2.2 The bargaining unit consists of all distribution center and sampleroom employees, including cutters and related crafts, employed by the Employer at the covered facilities. Local supplemental agreements may further define the bargaining unit at specific facilities. It is agreed that the Union represents a majority of said employees and that during the term of this Agreement the Union shall be the sole and exclusive bargaining representative of all employees in the bargaining unit as hereinabove described. Office, clerical, supervisory and executive employees, as well as any employees who may be employed at the retail facility at any location, are excluded from the provisions hereof. 2.3 "Workers" or "employees" as used in this Agreement means those employees covered by the bargaining unit as well as those who may be hereinafter included.


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2.4 This Agreement shall be the National Agreement. There shall be Supplemental Agreements which govern certain terms and conditions of employment at individual facilities. In case of conflict between this National Agreement and a Supplemental Agreement, the Supplemental Agreement shall govern. Any dispute unresolved as to whether a conflict exists between the National and a Supplemental Agreement or whether a particular dispute is subject to resolution under the provisions of the National or a Supplemental Agreement shall be subject to arbitration pursuant to Article of this National Agreement.


ARTICLE 3: UNION MEMBERSHIP


3.1 Good standing membership in the Union shall be a condition of employment with the Employer for all bargaining unit employees who have such membership on the date of execution of this Agreement; it shall also be a condition of employment with the Employer for all other bargaining unit employees on and after the thirtieth (30th) day following the execution or effective date of this Agreement, or on or after the thirtieth (30th) day following the beginning of their employment, whichever is the later. If the foregoing is prohibited by law, then at the corresponding time all employees shall be required as a condition of employment (unless prohibited by law) to pay to the Union a service charge to reimburse it for the cost of negotiating and administering this agreement. 3.2 Good standing membership in the Union for purposes of this Article means such membership in the Union through membership in any affiliate of UNITE. 3.3 In the event that paragraph may not be lawfully applied, all employees shall be informed by the Employer of the existence of this Agreement and the terms thereof and shall be advised by the Employer that, in its opinion, good labor-management relations are and will be best served and promoted if such employees become and remain members of the Union. The Employer agrees to implement and promote this provision by posting copies of the following notice near all time clocks and in other prominent places such as bulletin boards in its plants:


"NOTICE TO ALL EMPLOYEES"


This plant is being operated under the terms of an agreement with the Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees, AFL-CIO. All wages, hours and other conditions of employment are regulated by the terms of this agreement.
Good labor management relations will be best served and promoted, in our opinion, if all our employees covered by this agreement become and remain members of this Union.


Signed:


Name of Employer:


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ARTICLE 4: EMPLOYER'S OBLIGATIONS


All of the terms and provisions of this Agreement shall be binding upon the Employer and upon its subsidiaries, successors and assigns. In the event the Employer sells or transfers its business to another, it shall nevertheless continue to be liable for the complete performance of the terms and provisions of this Agreement by the purchaser or transferee until the purchaser or transferee expressly, in writing, assumes such performance and agrees to be fully bound by the terms and provisions of this Agreement.


ARTICLE 5: AFTER ACQUIRED AND NEW FACILITIES


5.1 This National Agreement shall be binding on those presently existing facilities described in Article above as well as all future facilities operated by and either owned or leased by the Employer, but not including retail stores. Local conditions for any future or after-acquired facility shall be negotiated between the Employer and the Union.
5.2 When the Employer acquires a new facility by merger, acquisition or consolidation, it shall advise the Union within one (1) year after such merger, acquisition or consolidation whether the facility will be maintained by the Employer or disposed of in some fashion. If the Employer advises the Union that the facility will not be maintained by the Employer, then the Employer either must dispose of the facility within six (6) months from the date of such notice (unless the parties mutually agree to an extension) or Article will apply. If the facility is maintained by the Employer, this Agreement shall become binding on that facility no later than eighteen (18) months from the date that the facility was initially acquired.
5.3 If the facility is a manufacturing facility, the time periods set forth in Article above will apply, but the employees of said manufacturing facility will be treated as a separate bargaining unit, and a separate collective bargaining agreement will be negotiated by the parties for that facility.


ARTICLE 6: TRIAL PERIOD


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The first thirty (30) calendar days of employment for newly- hired employees shall be deemed their trial period during which time they may be discharged without regard to cause. The trial period may be extended for another fourteen (14) calendar days with the written consent of the Union. Upon the expiration of the trial period, the newly-hired employee will be deemed a regular employee. The trial period shall not be abused by the Employer and any claim of abuse shall be the subject of arbitration hereunder.


ARTICLE 7: HIRING RATES AND MINIMUM WAGE SCALES


7.1 The hiring rates in effect in the various facilities and job classifications, if any shall be set forth in the local Supplemental Agreements. 7.2 All hiring rates at all facilities covered by this agreement shall increase $0.25 effective June 4, 2001 and an additional $0.25 effective June 3, 2002. The hiring rates may not be decreased. They may increase only upon mutual agreement of the parties. 7.3 Upon satisfactory completion of the trial period, an employee shall receive an additional $0.50 per hour. 7.4 All employees who have completed their trial period as of June 1, 2000 shall receive at least $0.25 an hour above the newly-established minimum wage rate in Paragraph . Employees who are in their trial period on June 1, 2000 shall receive the greater of the wage increase effective on June 3, 2000 or $0.50 above the June 3, 2000 hiring minimum, but not both.


ARTICLE 8: CHANGE IN LEGAL MINIMUMS


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If, during the term of this Agreement, a new applicable federal or state minimum wage law is enacted or becomes effective which increases the applicable minimum wage hereunder, then the minimum wage set forth herein shall be automatically increased so that such minimum wage shall be no less than 15% above any newly-established state or federally mandated legal minimum


ARTICLE 9: COST OF LIVING ADJUSTMENT


Should the cost of living, as reflected in the U.S. Consumer Price Index for the period of June 2000 through November 2001 increase ten (10%) percent over the consumer Price Index for May 2000, as published in June 2000, then the regular hourly wages of all employees shall be increased ten cents ($0.10) per hour. Additionally, hourly increases of five cents ($0.05) per hour shall be paid for each additional increase in the cost of living of one-half of one percent (.5%). Cost of living increases payable under this provision shall not exceed twenty-five cents ($0.25) per hour. Rises in the consumer Price Index shall be measured over an eighteen (18) month period, as set forth above, by utilizing the consumer Price Indices for the Urban Wage Earners and clerical workers, U.S. Cities, Average, printed and released in the months of July 2000 through December 2001. Wage increases due hereunder shall be effective January 4, 2002.


ARTICLE 10: JOB SECURITY/HANDLING AND
DISTRIBUTION OF PRODUCT


10


10.1 No employee shall be involuntarily permanently laid off as a direct result of the Employer's use of a third party contractor to distribute its product. 10.2 To protect the job security of the employees of the Employer and to preserve labor standards among workers who are employed in the integrated process of production of the Employer's garments, the parties agree to the following:
In the event the Employer engages a third party contractor to operate a distribution facility entirely dedicated to the distribution of the Employer's garments for a period in excess of two (2) years, or if the Employer engages a third party contractor where the Employer's garments will take over 50% of the square footage of the third party's facility for more than three (3) months, such third party contractor must have a collective bargaining relationship with UNITE or an affiliate thereof. 10.3 Subject to the protections set forth above, nothing contained herein or in any Local Supplement shall be deemed to restrain the Employer in its determination as to the methods or means by which its products are handled and distributed, including, but not limited to, the allocation of products and functions among the Employer's facilities or the use of facilities not owned, leased or operated by the Employer.


ARTICLE 11: CHANGE IN PAY SYSTEMS


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The Employer reserves the right to change the method of payment for some of the general distribution or quality assurance employees to an incentive system. Employees on the incentive system shall not be paid less than their current hourly rate. The Union may assert reasonable challenges to the fairness of the proposed incentive system. Any disputes regarding the implementation of such systems may be submitted to the arbitrator for resolution.


ARTICLE 12: WAGE INCREASES


12.1 The wage increases fo
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