CAW Backs Liberal NDP Minority Government

Toronto, Ontario

December 5, 2005


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CAW Backs Liberal NDP Minority Government
CAW Backs Liberal NDP Minority Government
dated December 5, 2005

Toronto, Ontario
December 2, 2005

       The hundreds of delegates, at the Canadian Auto Workers union Council in Toronto, have endorsed a federal election strategy to elect as many NDP candidates as possible and defeat Conservatives wherever possible. CAW national President Buzz Hargrove opened the debate in his report to the council on December 2nd.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       "And I want to say as strongly as I can that that is my recommendation this weekend to the delegates here, that we do whatever we can to elect as many New Democrats and to ensure that we have a Liberal minority government; and that we do everything in our power to ensure that Stephen Harper forms neither a minority Conservative government or worse still a majority Conservative government. We owe that to the members of our union."


       The debate among the delegates was passionate on both sides of the question but at the end of the day the vote was overwhelmingly in favour of endorsing NDP candidates who had a chance of winning their riding and throwing their vote to the Liberal candidate if necessary to stop a Conservative from being elected.
       Hargrove said the union has made progress with a minority government including federal and provincial funding for the auto industry and Bill C-55 which protects workers' rights.
Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       "The Bill was the bankruptcy act that protects workers' income and increases the amount of money and moves people who lose their jobs through bankruptcy up in the pecking order."
       "But the most important thing is we now have enshrined in legislation that a bankruptcy judge, a court cannot interfere with a collective agreement. It can only be changed by negotiations between the parties."


       While the federal election is of great importance, Hargrove said the impact of concession demands on auto assembly workers in the United States poses a danger to every worker in North America.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       "If all of these with their strong unions are forced to take cut backs, what do you think is going to happen to the steel workers, and healthcare workers and hospitality workers? Every worker in North America will be impacted by what I call the Delphi disease.

       The CAW auto parts workers and skilled trades council have already started the fight back against concessions and Hargrove said the rest of the union will follow.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

       The auto parts workers took a firm position that we are not opening our agreements. We are not giving back any of our wages. We are not giving back any pensions. We're not giving up any of our health care benefits. And we are going to fight like hell including workplace take-overs if we have to, legal or illegal we're going to fight like hell to defend the standard of living of the auto parts workers and other workers in our union."

CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."


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