• Jun 15, 2010
One three-month period of profitability after years losses may be reason to cheer, but it hardly justifies going back to the old ways of doing things, right? Nonetheless, according to The Detroit News, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka this week called on General Motors, Ford and Chrysler to give back the concessions that the UAW made in the last couple of years as they companies went through bankruptcy. Trumka was speaking at the UAW's constitutional convention in Detroit.

Members of the UAW certainly gave up a lot in terms of both present and future benefits as well as wages for new employees, but industry watchers suggest that sales are still weak the companies are hardly thriving. Further, all automakers will also have to deal with developing vehicles that meet new fuel economy and CO2 standards over the next several years. In particular, GM and Chrysler need to launch new products and continue to streamline costs in order to be viable.

It's also unclear what, exactly, could be given back. Obviously, programs like the jobs bank are unlikely to be restored and the absence of total reform in the health care system means that restoring retiree health car programs are probably not on the table, either.

[Source: The Detroit News | Image: Chris Hondros/Getty]


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  • 47 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I used to work for company X. I thought they made me work too hard for too many hours for too little money. So I talked to company Y and they hired me, paying me more money and giving me better working conditions. Union members (public and private) - do you get it?
      • 4 Years Ago
      I own a Ford Ranger built in Minnesota, and a Ford Fusion built in Mexico. Although I prefer my cars made in USA, there is plenty of space available in Mexico (or even Canada for God's Sake) for more auto plants.

      Ironically, as the American automakers leave the US, other automakers are moving INTO the US. They ALL have plants here now!

      Can anyone think of the difference between all the companies making cars in the USA, and the American companies LEAVING the USA? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

      Hint - Toyota had ONE plant in California that played by the same rules - they promptly shut that plant down.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Seeing as how the current wage and benefits are comparable to the competition, no increases should be considered. If the union wants to strike, there is a sizable unemployment pool from which to draw.
      • 4 Years Ago
      They just don't get it, do they? A couple of the automakers have a decent quarter, and the first thing the UAW does is ask for more money. WTF is wrong with these people? The unions are one of the number one reasons, if not the number one reason, why the US automakers are hurting so bad to begin with and why the US will never be able to compete with many of their foreign competitors. If the unions had it their way, the US automakers would never make a dollar of profit. They have the mindset that every dollar of profit made should be sent straight to them. It so sad.
      • 4 Years Ago
      some of you must have forgotten the pay and bonuses of the top auto execs were getting while they made cuts to the lower level salary and hourly workers.

      the same think happened with delphi. hourly workers where cut, wages were cut; but top execs got incentives to stay. the very same people who helped drive the company into bankruptcy.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Every time I hear about unions it's something that makes me hate them a bit more.
      I would be ashamed of myself should I ever get unionized, what a disgrace.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I read an article in the Detroit News that says because the UAW are now owners in GM and Chrysler, that negates their anti-trust status and Ford can dump their contracts.

      I bet Ford's stock will skyrocket if they can get out from under those unreasonable contracts.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I'd really like to see Autoblog do a story on this. Can you say where you found that article?
        • 4 Years Ago
        It would be to much of a perfect day for that to happen.
        The UAW just doesnt seem to grasp normal business sense. They'd rather bleed them drie rather than allow them to grow.

        But the point of the story you mention does have bearing in my mind. How can the UAW say they are giving Ford a fair deal when they own part of the competition?
        • 4 Years Ago
        I mean, is there a link to it?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Lets dispatch a couple of F-16's and level Cobo, solves 2 problems, we get rid of the UAW leadership, and break ground on the upcoming renovations.
      • 4 Years Ago
      STFU you irrelevant bloodsucking jackasses!!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        I had to check to make sure this wasn't from The Onion.

        Wow! Just Wow!
        • 4 Years Ago
        What Polly said. This is a speech for the troops and nothing more. He's new at his job and he has to make it look good.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Wow, a union leader publicly calling for more money and benefits for union employees? That's crazy.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Entitlement mentality combined with a total lack of understanding of reality.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is amazing. No one is defending the unions.

      Dinosaurs, I tell you.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Here we go...
      • 4 Years Ago
      There is no better single predictor of economic decline and closure than whether or not a business is unionized.

      None.

      It is the hourly rates they seek. It's the work restrictions. The endless, mindless, productivity robbing job classifications that rob companies of there ability to move people within an organization, the very practices that would ensure most companies of survival.

      And besides, have you ever met a union member who inspires you as a go-getter, can-do type of personality?

      Neither have I.
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