Issue #18 - October 7, 1996 - Membership Shows Solid Support

Issue #18 - October 7, 1996 - Membership Shows Solid Support

Escalating Strikes:

On Strike


On Strike


Oct 9


Nearly 10,000 workers expressed their determination to ‘stay out for as long as it takes,’when they showed up at weekend membership meetings held in Windsor, Ste Thérèse, Oshawa, St Catharines, London and Woodstock.

In Windsor, approximately 900 workers turned out to the transmission plant meeting and over 1,000 attended the trim plant meeting.

"GM made more money than the banks, yet it wants to break the 1996 auto pattern," said Buzz Hargrove, CAW President. He said there is no economic reason why GM cannot meet the Chrysler pattern set in Canada.

Workers gave a standing ovation to Hargrove when he said, "Parts workers are entitled to be treated the same as assembly workers."

Ken Lewenza, president local 444 Chrysler workers in Windsor was cheered when he said, "whatever it takes - financial and moral support - we’re there for the GM workers".

In Oshawa, at the Civic Arena, nearly 3,000 members on strike also gave Hargrove a standing ovation when he said, "work ownership is about our jobs, our families and our communities. It’s about restricting GM’s ability to sell our jobs to the lowest bidder."

A packed meeting with 3,500 present in St. Catharines on Sunday demonstrated workers understood the issues and were ready to join the strike at midnight on Sunday.
Ste Thérèse workers gave a resounding show of support for their bargaining committee when more than 1,000 turned out at a membership meeting.

The London membership voiced their overwhelming support to stand firm and are ready to join the strike on Wednesday if no settlement is achieved.

The Woodstock membership turned out in full force in support of the strike against GM.


Hargrove and the CAW top economic sub-committee met with GM’s top committee headed by chief negotiator Dean Munger on Monday morning. In a press interview following the meeting, Hargrove described it as "tough" with no progress. A determined Hargrove said the only way to get things moving is to keep communication lines open.

CAW/GM Master Bargaining Committee Chairperson Dave Vyse summed up the membership meetings as a solid demonstration of support for the bargaining committee’s position that there must be a settlement based on the pattern at Chrysler. "Workers are angry at GM’s lack of respect for the work they do and how they’ve contributed to the enormous profits. I’ve never seen the membership so united in every location."

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