Arts/Culture
4:28 pm
Sat February 19, 2011

DSO musicians reject management's "final" offer

Musicians of the Detroit Symphony orchestra have rejected management’s latest contract offer.  

The musicians' union says while salary cuts had been agreed upon, other issues, including employee health care deductibles were unacceptable.

Spokesman Greg Bowens says management's offer called for an 800 percent increase in their deductible.

DSO president and CEO Ann Parsons says most people have been affected by changes in health care costs.

"Everything in our world has changed," Parsons says. "I mean all of our worlds. And I think every listener here knows what I'm talking about. Nobody's health care is the way it used to be. On a detail-to-detail basis, there seem to be expectations that the institution can't meet."

Parsons also says the rest of the orchestral season has been suspended.

Bowens had not yet heard that news.

"We certainly hope that that does not happen," Bowens says. "Because nobody benefits from that. How in the world can you faise money if you suspend the rest of the season. What in the world could you do to attract a donor base and hang onto a donor base if you are not putting on performances for them.”

The strike began in October.

The season would have ended in June.

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