The deadline for sending in ballots within the UAW elections to guarantee they get counted is one week, November 18th. For extra info on Lehman’s marketing campaign, see WillforUAWPresident.org.
Supporters of United Auto Workers (UAW) presidential candidate Will Lehman spoke to workers at Ford’s meeting plant in Louisville, Ky., on Friday about current threats to the way forward for the manufacturing facility.
A November 3 article revealed by This was introduced by Automotive News “The future is in doubt” for the Louisville plant and its 4,000 workers, in reference to threats from Ford CEO Jim Farley, who questioned the allocation of future manufacturing to the plant forward of the 2023 contract negotiations with the United States auto workers.
During the 2019 contract negotiations, General Motors (GM) threatened to shut 5 vegetation and used the lives of hundreds of workers as a bargaining chip to demand large concessions. In this case, three vegetation have been closed whereas Ford, with the help of the UAW, gained a concession deal that failed to meet any of the workers’ primary calls for.
That Automotive News Article added that different vegetation have been on the chopping block. “Louisville Assembly will not be the one facility to be the main target of subsequent yr’s talks. The way forward for GM’s Chevrolet Malibu plant in Kansas City, Kansas, and Stellantis’ Jeep Cherokee plant in Belvidere, Illinois are additionally within the stars.”
In an open letter to workers on the Louisville Assembly, Lehman acknowledged, “Far from defending jobs, the UAW is openly collaborating in their destruction. Ford is closing the Romeo Engine plant outside of Detroit based on the 2019 UAW-Ford deal. Stellantis (Chrysler) has cut jobs at Trenton Engine, Warren Truck and stamping plants Warren and Sterling – all in the Detroit area.”
He continued: “This corporate terrorism must be stopped! I call for the full mobilization of all ordinary workers in the UAW to stop any further layoffs or concessions. It’s time to draw a line: workers’ rights must take precedence over private profit!”
Workers reacted with anger upon becoming aware of this threat to their jobs, while also expressing support for Lehman’s campaign. A 32-year-old electrician at the plant said: “We have to fight these people to defend our jobs, whether the union says so or not. I found Will on the World Socialist Web Site and I support him.”
Many Louisville Assembly workers had been compelled to transfer from one manufacturing facility to one other over the course of their a few years at Ford. You know all too effectively the expertise of mass layoffs and plant closures. A laborer named Chris had labored in Walton Hills, Ohio, for 18 years earlier than he had to go away to come to Louisville in 2012. He discovered the current firm memo asserting the change in plant supervisor to be an ominous signal. “He’s been here barely a year. He made this place a top producer. I don’t see why they should move it.”
He spoke of his experiences with plant closures and mass layoffs: “They keep it very quiet and then boom. They close the doors and you have to go. All they care about is profit. They don’t care about our livelihood.”
“I actually suppose they may shut the plant,” said a young four-year-old worker at the factory. He went on to describe the unsafe and inefficient management practices. “It’s amazing how they run the facility. They don’t care about the workers and they don’t care about the cars. They will send them out without wheels as long as they make money off them.”
Describing the potential impact of a plant closure, he added: “It could be devastating for the group. Lots of people within the manufacturing facility don’t know the rest.”
In a webinar on Nov. 6, Will Lehman defined that if the auto corporations could not preserve the factories open to create the roles workers need, with first rate pay and protected working circumstances, COLA, pensions and full medical care, they may Forfeited proper to handle the vegetation. Chris strongly agreed: “We all produce profits. We should control what happens to that money and what happens to those jobs.”
Another employee had labored till the Atlanta Assembly closed. She hadn’t heard of that Automotive News report and expressed critical concern: “The new plant manager coming from KTP [Kentucky Truck Plant] is one plant closer. That’s the talk going around the factory.”
She added: “The union downplayed it. They say it’s exactly what they say on every contract. But this is a real threat.”
When Larry, an assembly line worker, was briefed on this threat, he said he wasn’t aware that a shutdown was threatening, but wasn’t surprised that no one from the local UAW informed the workers: “They’re not serving to us all any additional. I do know we’ve a contract subsequent yr and I wished to discover out what we misplaced final yr. I emailed our native and requested however the one response I received was that I had to take a look at the current contract. But they stopped responding once I requested for a replica.”
Ford Motor Company posted income of over $151 billion within the 12 months ended September 2022, up 12.72 % year-over-year. The firm’s 2021 income was over $136 billion, a 7.23 % improve from 2020. Ford CEO Jim Farley acquired over $22 million in compensation for 2021, practically double what he was in 2021 ($11.8 million).
The different automobile corporations fared equally. In 2021, General Motors had gross sales of over $127 billion. Stellantis earned $176.7 billion, up 78.55 % from 2020.
While workers’ wages have been lower, their advantages lower and, in lots of instances, their jobs destroyed, the auto corporations have reaped a bonanza of income. The corrupt layer of bureaucrats on the high of the UAW who agreed to these concessions have additionally benefited amply throughout this era.
At the Nov. 6 webinar, Lehman acknowledged, “Although the UAW apparatus has overseen the loss of more than a million active members since 1980, its fortunes have remained relatively stable. The bureaucracy has squeezed more and more taxes out of us while moving more and more of its investments public, a blatant conflict of interest.”
In his assertion to Louisville workers, Lehman concluded, “Brothers and sisters, we must take a stand to prevent another workplace massacre. If you agree with my view, I urge you to vote for me and contact my campaign to discuss joining the growing network of grassroots committees.”
For extra info on the Lehman marketing campaign, see WillforUAWPresident.org.