Big Three Bargaining Begins

July 29, 1999


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Big 3 Bargaining Begins
Big 3 Bargaining Begins
dated July 29, 1999

The CAW has officially opened 1999 negotiations with the Big Three Auto makers with pensions, wages, reduced work time and modular manufacturing, identified as some of the key issues.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

"We want to make our pension plan attractive enough so that our senior people feel comfortable retiring with the knowledge that they can continue to live with a good standard of living and want them to watch what we are going to do for our current retirees so that they will be comfortable knowing that we don't forget about them when they retire."

Hargrove said any plans by the companies to restructure can't be made at the expense of CAW members.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

"There should be a commitment up front that whatever we do, the first thing that is considered is what is the impact on people and the best way to do that is to say " no matter how we restructure, whether we set up new companies, whether we change the way we produce vehicles in our current companies, The CAW-GM-Ford-Daimler Chrysler Master Agreements are the agreements that determine the relationships to the workers and their families and if we can do that we can take a lot of the tension out of the relationship between the union and the company and our members."

The union is also seeking support from the Big Three in getting auto parts manufacturers to remain neutral during organizing drives at their plants.
After meeting with all three companies Hargrove said the union has clearly spelled out its position and is ready to work hard to win a fair agreement for its members.

Buzz Hargrove
CAW National President

"The companies are making incredible profits because of the efforts of our members. Our quality, our productivity, our efforts to reduce waste, to control costs, are unprecedented in the industry at all three companies.
Our success should mean we can do our bargaining this time without any sacrifice on the part of our membership by having to go to the street to support their just demands.
Wages are an issue for our members in the plant. We've earned the right to improve substantially our wages, our cost of living, time off the job is absolutely key."

As for what company will be the target Hargrove says that decision will be made in early September.

CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."


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