Statement by Autoworker Caravan
Posted September 25, 2019
Picket at GM HQ
3-5 pm Friday, 9/27
Support the UAW strike!
Our strike against GM is showing the company and workers everywhere that UAW members are united and strong in the fight for jobs, justice and equity.
We are getting an outpouring of support from UAW sisters and brothers, from unions: ♦ Teamsters ♦ Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) ♦ National Nurses United ♦ American Postal Workers Union and many others, from ♦ presidential hopefuls Elisabeth Warren and Bernie Sand-
ers from ♦ city officials and elected representatives ♦ pro-labor community and environmental ad vocates, from ♦ churches ♦ small businesses and many more. Like the past two years’ nation wide teachers’ strikes, this strike has sparked SOLIDARITY and caught GM and the media by sur prise.
Autoworkers say NO! to concessions. The UAW has been in retreat mode since before the 2009 taxpayer bailout of GM and Chrysler. The theory was, we were going to live to “fight another day.” That day is here! During the bailout, Wall St. and the government held a gun to our heads and withdrew our strike power. No more. It’s time to win back the gains we lost, starting with Equal Pay for Equal Work! Everyone Tier One! No more “permatemps!” Reinstate the COLA, retirees’ bonus & annual pay raises!
The bankers and investors profiting off GM have no loyalty to workers in the USA or abroad.
While workers sacrifice on the picket line, GM will be paying stockholders 3rd quarter dividends of $543.4 million. That dividend is equal to more than $11,000 per UAW worker! CEO Mary Barra owns more than a million shares – she’ll pocket $1.2 million on top of the her $22 million/year pay package.
Barra closed (“unallocated”) 4 U.S. plants last November, aiming to bring workers to their knees and force new concessions. GM says it will allocate new work (a fraction of what we had) at two of the four locations (Lordstown and Detroit Hamtramck) on the condition that the UAW agree to new lower tier workers. Where does it end? Our ranks decline, as do our living standards. The UAW leadership in 2018 accepted a lower tier for workers employed by GM’s subsidiary, GM Subsys tems, LLC at Lordstown, Ohio, but GM closed the plant anyway. Concessions didn’t deliver “job security.”
GM workers in Oshawa, Ontario — members of Unifor Local 222 — are leading the way. When told last November that their plant was “unallocated,” they staged sit-ins in protest. They formed a Green Jobs Oshawa Coalition and are fighting to manufacture electric vans and other vehicles. Like in the U.S. the government bailed GM out, at taxpayer expense. Now Unifor members are demanding public ownership of the plant.
On behalf of GM autoworkers at the four “unallocated” plants and their respective communi ties, the UAW negotiators must demand that GM assign new product at all the plants. It can’t be just any product. On September 20th 4 million people in 150 countries demonstrated for radical measures to reverse the growing climate crisis which, if left unchecked, will devastate the planet and deny our kids and grandkids a sustainable future. The international federation of unions, IN DUSTRIALL (of which the UAW is a part), is calling for all its affiliates to stage global demonstra tions on Friday, Sept 27th against the climate crisis and for a just transition for workers. The Auto worker Caravan will join these efforts by picketing at GM Headquarters at the Ren Cen, downtown Detroit at 3 pm. Please Join us to protect GM autoworkers’ jobs, our communities, and our planet!
Picket at GM HQ @ Ren Cen on Jefferson 3-5 pm Friday, 9/27
The Autoworker Caravan was formed in 2008 by active and re tired UAW members to protest plant closings during the Great Recession, and to demand conversion of the auto plants for Green renewable energy production and Single Payer Health Care. The Autoworker Caravan fights for accountability in the UAW by holding rank and file speakouts, publishing the “low lights” of tentative UAW national agreements, and fighting for rank and file democracy at UAW Conventions. Please see the Autoworker Caravan facebook page for more information, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
We’re going on strike We’re going on strike