Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Support Chrysler Strikers

Chrysler Strike

1PM-October 10.

At least a partial strike at Chrysler has begun. Five of the nine assembly plants covered by the present contract were already idled for inventory adjustment and the union has made a tactical move to exempt those from the strike, leaving those workers on their regular pay and benefits–for now anyway. A tenth plant, the new Jeep plant in Toledo, operates under a separate, special UAW contract and will continue to operate until it runs out of parts.

There was no immediate word of what remaining issues sparked first the strike deadline, then the walkout this morning. Clearly the strip and flip Cerberus Capital Management, the private equity that bought Chrysler from Daimler, has different priorities than GM and Ford and are not prepared to accept the GM “pattern.” They seem unlikely to agree to even the tenuous “job security” pledges made by General Motors--which were critical to getting a membership ratification of a contract with massive, historic give-backs. Cerberus evidently wants more.

The GM strike was orchestrated to last only two days. It is doubtful that Cerberus will be so accommodating. While there are many unknown factors the Chrysler strike has the potential to turn in to a rough fight.

We have been highly critical of the objectives, strategy, and tactics of the UAW leadership. Now that the strike has begun we will defer criticism until it is over. The main task is to build solidarity with Chrysler workers. We will use the Daily Labor News Digest and the Labor Advocate Blog to pass along information on this important struggle

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