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UAW Enjoys Membership Increase in 2017

Union keeps adding new members to rolls.

by on Mar.30, 2018

UAW President Dennis Williams noted that despite some problems with its membership drive, the union saw an increase last year.

Despite a devastating scandal, adverse political environment and big defeats in key organizing drives in the auto industry, the United Auto Workers succeeded in adding nearly 15,000 new members in 2017.

The UAW reported the figure in its Labor Organization Annual Report, Form LM-2, which was filed with the U.S. Department of Labor. The report shows UAW membership at 430,871 in 2017, compared to 415,963 in 2016. This marks the ninth straight year of membership growth, the union said.

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UAW membership climbed as a result of organizing drives in gaming, higher education, heavy truck and automotive suppliers as well as some more modest growth in auto assembly. (more…)

German Union Workers Accept New Contract

New deal includes 4.3% pay raise, shorter work week provision.

by on Feb.07, 2018

German workers secured a new contract with a 4.3% pay raise and new rules for a shorter work week.

Union members in Baden-Württemberg, one of the most prosperous regions of German and the home of companies such as Daimler AG, Porsche and Bosch, appear to have gained a major bargaining victory, gaining a 4.3% pay increase and a reduction of the average work week to allow more time off for family leave.

The deal between IG Metall and the Suedwestmetall employers’ federation, which represent the employers, including major carmakers, calls, for workers in Germany to get a 4.3% pay increase April starting April 1.

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The workers will also receive other payments spread over the following 27 months until 2020, IG Metall’s Roman Zitzelsberger told reporters at the conclusion of the talks. (more…)

German Union Digging in for Tough Auto Negotiations

IG Metall preparing for industrywide strike as part of talks.

by on Jan.31, 2018

German workers are being prepared to take a strike vote in talks with automakers.

German carmakers and suppliers are in a major battle with IG Metall, the powerful metalworkers union, which is demanding higher wages and shorter hours. The negotiations are turning into the biggest confrontation between labor and management in more than a decade.

So-called “warning strikes” – short-term walkouts lasting no more than 24 hours – have already hit Daimler AG and Porsche this week as well as major suppliers such as Bosch and ZF. In all, an estimated 260 metalworking firms have been targeted by IG Metall and more than 120,000 workers at Volkswagen AG are poised to go on strike for 24 hours, starting Thursday.

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The walkouts, which stretch across Germany’s industrial centers, follow a failed set of negotiations, where neither the employers nor the union could agree on a formula for a new wage agreement, observers in Germany noted. (more…)

UAW Protesting Against Fiat Chrysler at NAIAS 2018

Union plans to picket on Sunday over lost Toledo jobs.

by on Jan.18, 2018

The UAW is planning to protest against Fiat Chrysler in front of Cobo Center in Detroit.

Members of the United Auto Workers from the Jeep Local, UAW Local 12, are planning a demonstration at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Sunday.

The protest targets Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. for its plans to eliminate jobs at a transportation unit in the Jeep manufacturing complex where FCA is preparing to launch a new version of one of Jeep’s signature products — the new Wrangler.

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“They never talked to us,” said Bruce Baumhower, president of UAW Local 12, which kicked off the campaign to halt the FCA’s plans to eliminate the jobs earlier this week with a demonstration at the Toledo complex. (more…)

UAW Taps Veteran Bureaucrat to be Next President

Election to be held next year at convention.

by on Dec.01, 2017

The UAW's powerful "Reuther" caucus selected Gary Jones to replace Dennis Williams next year.

Gary Jones, a trained accountant and former Ford Motor Co. employee, has been tapped to become the next president of the United Auto Workers next June.

Jones, a long-time union staff member who has been a member of the UAW’s executive board for the past five years, was selected as the candidate of choice of the so-called “Reuther” or administrative caucus, which has dominated the union’s internal politics since the late 1940s.

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The officials vote for UAW president won’t come until next year during the convention. But during the past 70 years no challenger has ever succeeded in mounting a successful contest for the union presidency.  (more…)

Is the Ground Collapsing Under the UAW?

Union can't seem to get untracked in new membership campaign.

by on Nov.10, 2017

While the UAW provided plenty of support, Fuyao Glass employees voted against union representation by a two-to-one margin. (Photo credit: UAW)

Forget the big ones, the UAW cannot seem to capture any victories these days as workers at the Fuyao Glass Industry Group Co. Ltd. plant in Moraine, Ohio, voted by a better than two-to-one margin against union representation.

The loss at the glass supplier is doubly difficult as the plant is a suburb of Dayton, Ohio, which was once a union stronghold for General Motors employees. It also comes on the heels of a stinging rebuke at Nissan’s plant in Canton, Mississippi.

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“Fuyao workers fighting for a voice in their workplace were unable to win against a barrage of anti-labor tactics and intimidation by management at the Ohio glass plant,” the UAW said in a statement.  (more…)

UAW Eyeing Production Levels at US Plants

Union officials about rising import levels.

by on Jul.21, 2017

GM CEO Mary Barra and UAW President Dennis Williams talk regularly about the number of vehicles GM imports from other countries, Williams said.

The United Auto Workers union is keeping an eye on General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles concerned about the potential threat to plants and jobs from slumping U.S. car sales and by increased imports from countries like China.

“We are talking to (GM) right now about the products that they currently have” at underused car plants such as Hamtramck in Michigan and Lordstown in Ohio, and whether they might be replaced with newer, more popular vehicles such as crossovers, UAW president Dennis Williams said.

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“We are tracking it (and) we are addressing it,” said Williams noting he meets quarterly with GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. The discussion about replacement products is ongoing. (more…)

UAW Pushes for Organizing Vote at Nissan’s Mississippi Plant

Union faces several hurdles in its latest effort.

by on Jul.11, 2017

Danny Glover, spoke during a recent UAW rally in Canton, Mississippi. Photo credit: UAW.

After a long and often tortuous campaign, the United Auto Workers has filed for an election at Nissan’s sprawling assembly plant in Canton, Mississippi.

The campaign began nearly a decade ago but has been stalled several times by Nissan’s efforts to organizing the workers at the plant. The UAW said little about the petition for a vote but generally the union has not asked for a vote unless it has surveys among workers indicate a majority of the workers support the union.

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However, the union faces several issues including the fact that a large percentage of workers in the plant are “temporary” employees, who are paid by an outside contractor. In the past, most of the support for the union has come from full-time employees, who have seen their terms of employment altered by the company. (more…)

Nissan Says “No” to UAW

Union wants talks to discuss organizing drive at Canton plant.

by on Mar.24, 2017

The UAW and Nissan are butting heads again over the maker's Canton, Mississippi, plant.

Nissan has rebuffed new efforts by the United Auto Workers Union to begin organizing the maker’s big assembly plant in Canton, Mississippi.

The factory has landed at the center of the UAW’s attention as it struggles to kick-start long-stalled efforts to represent workers at the many foreign-assembly plants that have sprung up across the South in recent years. Following a March 4 rally outside the plant headlined by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, the union demanded to meet with company officials to discuss worker concerns.

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But Nissan executive Scott Becker responded by rejecting the proposed meeting, telling the UAW, “It would be inappropriate to have discussions with your union regarding employees at Nissan’s manufacturing plant in Canton, Miss., without your union first having obtained the support of a majority of employees at that plant.” (more…)

UAW Ready to Talk Trade with Trump

Union agrees with President-elect's plan to renegotiate NAFTA.

by on Nov.11, 2016

UAW President Dennis Williams says the union supports President-elect Donald Trump's plans to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.

The United Auto Workers, which had campaigned against Donald Trump this fall, is prepared to support the Republican President-elect in his bid to overturn the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Meanwhile, both the Canadian government of Justin Trudeau, whose own union supporters want the NAFTA re-opened, and the government of Mexico have signaled they are willing to open talks with the new Trump administration on changing NAFTA, which has been instrumental in the development of a robust Mexican auto industry.

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“We will work with President-elect Trump as much as we can,” UAW President Dennis Williams said during a session with reporters at UAW headquarters in Detroit. (more…)