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Archive for the ‘UAW’ Category

UAW President Jones Shakes Up Roles of Top Negotiators

Estrada moved from GM to FCA.

by on Jun.15, 2018

UAW former GM VP Cindy Estrada was part of an investigation by federal officials about the potential misuse of union funds. She now heads up FCA.

In one of his first moves, Gary Jones, the newly elected United Auto Workers president, tapped three new vice presidents to handle day-to-day relations and negotiations with Detroit three auto workers, and the choices included a few surprises.

Jones shifted Cindy Estrada from the General Motors Department, the first woman to head what has been long regarded the union’s flagship department, to lead negotiations at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. Department.

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Jones said he selected Estrada for Fiat Chrysler because the work force is younger and more technically savvy then their counterparts at GM and Ford, which have not hired as many new employees as FCA.  (more…)

New UAW Chief Takes Office With Full War Chest

Officers get 31% raise after rank-and-file gets dues hike.

by on Jun.15, 2018

Newly elected UAW President Gary Jones acknowledges the crowd at the union's quadrennial meeting.

The United Auto Workers installed a new president this week as Gary Jones replaced Dennis Williams in the corner office at union headquarters in Solidarity House in Detroit.

During its quadrennial Constitutional Convention, the union also installed a new Secretary Treasurer, Ray Curry, and one new vice president Rory Gamble.

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Jones had been part of the UAW’s financial staff at union headquarters during for several years before returning to his home region in the western United States to serve two terms as a regional director and as a member of the union’s executive board before becoming the candidate of the union’s administration caucus, which controls all of the levers of power inside the union. (more…)

UAW, FCA Head to Court to Retrieve Stolen Funds

Union pledges safeguards in place to prevent future problems.

by on Jun.12, 2018

UAW President Dennis Williams told members that new safeguards will prevent future attempts to steal from training funds.

The scandal-ridden UAW-Chrysler National Training Center has filed a civil lawsuit against a former Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. executive and the widow of United Auto Workers leader in a bid to claw back millions of dollars they embezzled from the NTC during the years.

Dennis Williams, the UAW outgoing president, also took aim at the theft of the joint funds during a speech on the opening day of the unions Constitution Convention.

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“To be clear: those who misallocated or misused training center funds betrayed our trust,” the retiring president told the 1,100 delegates gathered in Detroit “The UAW has zero tolerance for corruption, wrongdoing, at any level of this organization.” (more…)

UAW Overlooks Schrade’s Role in Union, US History

Union fails to recognize impact of former RFK adviser.

by on Jun.05, 2018

Former adviser to Robert Kennedy and UAW organizer Paul Schrade, who's impact on the union seems to have been overlooked.

When John F. Kennedy first approached Walter Reuther of the United Auto Workers at the 1956 Democratic Party Convention, hoping to win his support for the Vice Presidency, Paul Schrade, as one of UAW President’s top aides, observed the meeting.

However, the vital role of Schrade, who is now 93 and still an activist, in UAW history has been largely overlooked by union during past four decades as the UAW has struggled to maintain its influence both at the bargaining table and in politics.

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But Reuther, who had an eye for talent, according to historian and biographer Nelson Lichtenstein, had recruited Schrade to serve on his staff because the “bright young radical” union activist had already made his mark among UAW’s local officers in Southern California’s booming aerospace industry. (more…)

Feds Get Guilty Plea in FCA-UAW Training Center Scandal

Brown is third exec to plead guilty.

by on May.29, 2018

Former FCA executive Michael Brown is the third FCA executive to plead guilty in the FCA-UAW scandal. (Photo credit: UAW-Chrysler)

Another Fiat Chrysler executive pleaded guilty to criminal charges in the ongoing federal investigation of FCA leaders bribing key United Auto Workers officials to make it easier to gain their cooperation on labor-related issues in which the UAW had a voice.

Michael Brown, the third FCA official charged by the U.S. Depart of Justice, pleaded guilty to misprision of felony because he admitted to providing misleading and incomplete information to a federal grand jury when he asked specific questions of a conspiracy to violate the Labor Management Relations Act.

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Brown, 60, a former senior executive on FCA’s labor relations staff and co-director of joint FCA-UAW training center, was accused lying to cover up a conspiracy in which FCA executives making illegal payments to UAW officers and staff members. (more…)

UAW’s Williams Supports Trump’s Tariff Proposal

No plans yet for calling an organizing vote at Tesla.

by on May.24, 2018

UAW President Dennis Williams said the union favors President Trump's plan for a 25% tariff on foreign cars.

Despite some major political differences, the United Auto Workers union is fully prepared to support President Donald Trump’s protectionist trade policies.

Dennis Williams, president of the United Auto Workers, said, “I have said that as long as when he is working in the best interest of working men and women then we will support him. I think it’s time to look at this.”

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Williams comment came on the heels of a Presidential tweet that said autoworkers would like what was coming and promptly threatened to levy a 25% tariff on imported vehicles and started an investigation on whether importing vehicles threatened national security. (more…)

Ford Shuts Down Half of Production of F-150 Due to Supplier Fire

GM halts van production while FCA adjusts minivan line.

by on May.09, 2018

Ford shut down the F-150 line at the Kansas City assembly plant due to a parts shortage.

Ford Motor Co. is staring a complete shutdown of production of the company’s best-selling product, the F-150, in the face due to a fire at a supplier facility.

A major fire at Meridian Magnesium Products in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, on May 2 created a shortage of die-cast parts for the F-150 since the incident. General Motors and Fiat Chrysler facilities have also been impacted by the fire and subsequent parts shortages.

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Ford produces the trucks at plants in Missouri and Michigan. Currently the truck production half of Ford Kansas City Assembly Plant is shut down for the week, sending 3,600 workers home due to the parts shortage. (more…)

UAW Leaders Struggling With Credibility Issues in Wake of Scandal

UAW-GM leader sends letter explaining outsourcing moves.

by on May.03, 2018

UAW's Cindy Estrada was part of an investigation by federal officials about the potential misuse of union funds.

This story has been updated with new information.

With their credibility damaged by the worst scandal to ever rock the United Auto Workers’ top executive board, union leaders are scrambling to explain changes in the union’s contract with General Motors that will allow the outsourcing of job at GM assembly plants in Lordstown, Ohio, and Orion Township, Michigan.

“You deserve to know the facts about recent outsourcing at Local 5960 Lake Orion and Local 1112 Lordstown,” Cynthia Estrada, the UAW vice president in charge of union’s GM Department, said in a letter to a union members.

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“This was a decision agreed to by the involved local, regional and national leadership. Everyone agrees that this situation sucks. But what would suck even more would be to have GM shut down any of our plants and devastate hundreds of our members’ lives and the communities where those plants exist,” said Estrada, who noted GM car production has slashed by 20%. (more…)

GM Puts Third Shift Back in Place in Spring Hill Plant

New shift will add 700 jobs in September.

by on Apr.25, 2018

GM is adding 700 jobs at its Spring Hill, Tennessee plant to build more Cadillac XT5 and GMC Acadia crossovers.

The on-again, off-again third shift at General Motors plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee, is on again, this time producing more crossovers as well as an Acadia vehicle for the company’s Australian brand, Holden.

The third shift is expected to begin production in September 2018 and add 700 new jobs. Industry wide, customers are increasingly purchasing crossovers, trucks and SUVs over sedans. Crossovers make up nearly half of the U.S. retail market (48.5%), according to GM.

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Crossovers are booming for GM too as the GMC Acadia and Cadillac XT5 are posting strong results. Acadia retail sales were up more than 15% for the first quarter of 2018 on a year-over-year basis. Total Acadia sales were up 3%, marking the best first quarter ever for Acadia sales for both retail and total. (more…)

Feds Charge Former FCA Exec in Labor Scandal

Seven people have faced indictments in ongoing probe.

by on Apr.06, 2018

Michael Brown is the latest person to be charged in a federal probe of FCA and the UAW. (Photo credit: UAW-Chrysler)

The U.S Department of Justice is bringing charges against a third Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. official as part of the expanding corruption probe into the illegal use of funds set aside under FCA’s labor contract with the United Auto Workers for training union members.

Michael Brown, former director of employee relations at Fiat Chrysler, was charged with lying to a federal grand jury about an alleged bribery scheme involving his direct superior, Alphonse Iacobelli and others at FCA. The scheme netted Iacobelli and others participating in the scheme more than $4.5 million, according to the DOJ.

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Federal prosecutors allege Brown knew that FCA officials were bribing UAW leaders, but “deliberately” provided “misleading and incomplete testimony.” Not only did he know that this was going on, prosecutors allege, but he failed to notify authorities about the corruption, according to the DOJ. (more…)