Autoworkers Issues

Thousands to be sacked at GM factory in South Korea

By Ben McGrath, 15 February 2018

General Motors is demanding additional cuts to auto workers’ wages and conditions as it threatens to pull out of South Korea entirely.

The unquiet death of a young Ford worker

The parents of Jacoby Hennings demand to know why their son died

By Jerry White, 12 February 2018

Nearly four months later, the circumstances surrounding the violent death of the 21-year-old temporary part-time worker remain unexplained.

Moody’s downgrades Ford’s credit forecast as investors demand deep cuts

By Tom Hall, 10 February 2018

The move by the credit ratings agency reflects fears that Ford’s “Fitness Redesign” initiative could meet with uncontrollable opposition from autoworkers.

Former TPT workers at Jeep seek to reopen lawsuit against UAW, Fiat Chrysler

By Shannon Jones, 8 February 2018

The workers say revelations of management payoffs to UAW officials require the courts to reexamine their lawsuit.

APTIV autoworkers in northern Mexico are close to a strike

By Alex González, 8 February 2018

More than 4,000 autoworkers are fighting for a better salary and working conditions.

UAW contracts must be declared null and void

By Jerry White, 7 February 2018

The corruption revealed in the unfolding scandal is not an aberration, but expresses the very essence of the UAW.

“They chew you up and spit you out”

Ford workers in Chicago speak out on UAW corruption

By our reporters, 6 February 2018

Workers at the Ford Chicago Assembly Plant reacted to the continuing revelations in the UAW corruption scandal and denounced abuses by the union and management.

Evidence that Norwood Jewell was bribed to sign 2015 UAW-Fiat Chrysler deal

By Jerry White, 5 February 2018

Fiat Chrysler threw a lavish party for Jewell, two months after the top administrative body of the UAW tagged him to lead negotiations with the automaker.

Workers discuss UAW corruption scandal at WSWS Autoworker Newsletter call-in meeting

By our reporters, 2 February 2018

Autoworkers discussed the significance of the scandal and the Autoworker Newsletter’s call for the formation of rank-and-file committees, independent of the United Auto Workers union.

Workers demand nullification of contracts

Anger mounts as UAW VP for Fiat Chrysler is implicated in corruption scandal

By Shannon Jones, 1 February 2018

Former Fiat Chrysler chief negotiator Iacobelli named Jewell’s charity as the recipient of “prohibited payments” siphoned through the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center.

Fiat Chrysler workers file class action against UAW demanding return of union dues

By Jerry White, 31 January 2018

A legal complaint by three autoworkers charges the union with colluding to destroy wages and rights, and defrauding workers of hundreds of millions of dollars in union dues.

Harley-Davidson to close Kansas City plant, lay off 800

By Marcus Day, 31 January 2018

The mass layoffs at the motorcycle manufacturer are part of a growing wave of job losses, belying Trump’s claims of strength in the US economy.

“Everybody wants to walk at our plant”

US autoworkers want to overturn contracts UAW signed after corporate bribes

By Jerry White, 30 January 2018

In some plants autoworkers have discussed walking out on strike, insisting the contracts signed by corrupt UAW officials are null and void.

Questions remain one month after death of auto parts worker in Western Michigan

By David Rodriguez, 30 January 2018

56-year-old Scott Teusink died last month after he was hit by a massive steel coil at Challenge Manufacturing in the city of Holland, Michigan.

Contracts signed by corrupt UAW should be nullified: A reply to Dennis Williams

By Jerry White, 29 January 2018

Why should autoworkers accept the terms of a labor agreement signed by union officials on the payroll of the auto corporations?

US autoworkers express outrage over latest revelations of UAW bribery

By a WSWS reporting team, 29 January 2018

Autoworkers reacted angrily to the admission by former Fiat Chrysler negotiator Alphons Iacobelli that he paid $1.5 million to UAW officials to influence contract negotiations.

The UAW corruption scandal: The case for workers’ committees

By Joseph Kishore, 26 January 2018

Fiat Chrysler’s bribery of UAW officials involved in contract negotiations exposes the anti-working-class character of the entire trade union apparatus.

In plea deal with prosecutors

Former Fiat Chrysler negotiator says FCA bribed the UAW to secure passage of 2009, 2015 contracts

By Shannon Jones, 25 January 2018

According to a court filing Alphons Iacobelli paid $1.5 million to top UAW officials between 2009 and 2015 for the express purpose of influencing contract negotiations.

Hundreds more jobs being cut at Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port plant in UK

By Margot Miller, 24 January 2018

The UK redundancies are part of a European-wide offensive against jobs and wages.

Jeep workers demonstrate at Detroit auto show against job cuts

By Tim Rivers, 22 January 2018

United Auto Workers Local 12 called the demonstration to vent worker anger over the termination of 88 union truck drivers from the Fiat Chrysler Toledo Truck Terminal.

Two key players in UAW corruption scandal to enter guilty pleas

By Shannon Jones, 18 January 2018

The wife of a deceased UAW official and a Fiat Chrysler executive are expected to plead guilty to charges they took part in a scheme to siphon off millions from the UAW-Chrysler Joint Training Center.

German Ford workers express solidarity with their Romanian co-workers

By Marianne Arens, 12 January 2018

The comments of German Ford workers make clear that a growing number of autoworkers understand the necessity of uniting internationally to combat the global corporations.

Huntsville, Alabama Toyota-Mazda plant announcement highlights shift in auto production to southeastern US

By Ed Hightower, 12 January 2018

The planned facility is the latest expansion of “transplants” in the US South and will employ some 4,000 workers.

020 UAW corruption

10 January 2018

Canada: Ontario Liberals impose two-tier employment on autoworkers

By Carl Bronski, 10 January 2018

The unions’ hypocritical hand-wringing over the anti-worker legislation cannot disguise the fact that Unifor helped elect successive Liberal governments in Ontario.

Volkswagen plans to dismiss all temporary contract workers in German plants

By Dietmar Henning, 8 January 2018

VW’s mass firing of temporary contract workers is the prelude to sweeping job cuts and attacks on the gains of all autoworkers.

Romanian Ford workers defiant as company seeks to impose blackmail contract

By Jerry White and Eric London, 4 January 2018

Workers returned from their holiday break in a rebellious mood with sporadic work stoppages and a growing determination for collective resistance.

Macron turns France’s labor decrees on auto workers

By Alex Lantier, 29 December 2017

The announcement of mass layoffs by Europe’s second-largest automaker is part of a relentless international assault on workers' jobs, working conditions and social rights.

US Ford worker supports autoworker strike in Romania: “They need to hook up with us”

By Tim Rivers, 29 December 2017

The worker welcomed the rebellion against the Romanian union bureaucrats, stating, “I am sure that up and down the line, the whole union chain of command was bought and paid for.”

Romanian Ford workers must make international appeal!

World Socialist Web Site Autoworker Newsletter, 29 December 2017

The success of the Craiova workers’ struggle will be determined by their ability to retain their independence from the trade unions and the bourgeois parties, and by their ability to break the isolation of their strike and link up with their fellow Ford workers internationally.

VW colluded in torture of militant workers during military dictatorship in Brazil

By Ludwig Weller, 28 December 2017

The document produced by the lead investigator shows that Volkswagen worked closely with the military dictatorship that ruled Brazil from 1964 to 1985 in the persecution and torture of militant workers.

Romanian Ford worker speaks to WSWS about wildcat strike at Craiova plant

By Eric London, 27 December 2017

“We have a corrupt union that works for the company.”

Holidays painful for family of young Ford worker killed in Detroit area plant

By Jerry White, 27 December 2017

December 27 would have been the 22nd birthday of Jacoby Marquis Hennings, who tragically died at Ford’s Woodhaven Stamping Plant on October 20.

“If finding out what happened could save another life at least something good would come from our son’s death”

Family, co-workers want truth about Kentucky Ford worker’s death

By Jerry White, 23 December 2017

Two weeks after the death of 41-year-old electrician Ivan Bridgewater, company, union and government officials have not explained how the fatal accident occurred.

Massive job cuts at Opel and Vauxhall

By Marianne Arens, 23 December 2017

The management board, works council and IG Metall union have agreed on a drastic reduction in staff and labour costs at Opel to make the company more profitable.

Wildcat strike stops production as workers eject union leaders at Ford Romania

By Eric London, 23 December 2017

The spontaneous walkout took place the day after Ford and the union agreed to a sellout contract with similar terms as those imposed on workers in the US and Canada.

“They are going to cover-up everything like they always do”

Ford, UAW downplay finding of Legionella bacteria at Kansas City assembly plant

By Shannon Jones, 22 December 2017

Ford and the UAW are keeping workers in the dark following the discovery of deadly Legionella bacteria at the facility in the wake of the diagnosis of a plant worker with Legionnaires’ disease.

Autopsy report refutes claims young Ford worker was on drugs at time of factory shooting

By Jerry White, 15 December 2017

UAW officials told police that Jacoby Hennings, who allegedly took his life on October 20 after confronting union officials with a gun, appeared “under the influence of drugs or alcohol.”

Amid escalating corruption scandal, top UAW operatives step down

By Shannon Jones, 15 December 2017

The ongoing federal corruption investigation and growing worker anger and militancy are fueling an apparent crisis in the top echelons of the United Auto Workers union.

“Ford and big companies don’t care if you live or not”

Ford workers speak out on Kentucky Truck worker’s death

By Jessica Goldstein and Jerry White, 14 December 2017

A coroner ruled that Ivan Bridgewater, 41, died of blunt force trauma under still unexplained circumstances.

Details of Kentucky Ford worker’s death still not revealed

By Jessica Goldstein and Jerry White, 13 December 2017

The 41-year-old electrician was buried in his hometown of Seymour, Indiana Tuesday, while his family and Ford workers continue to be kept in the dark about the cause of this tragedy.

The death toll behind corporate America’s record profits

By Jerry White, 12 December 2017

A 41-year-old electrician at Ford’s Kentucky Truck Plant is the latest victim of the relentless drive for corporate profit in America.

Electrician, 41, killed at Ford Kentucky Truck Plant on Saturday

By Jessica Goldstein, 11 December 2017

Ivan Bridgewater III was killed while working the third shift at the Louisville Kentucky plant and leaves behind a wife and young son.

Near walkout at Detroit auto plant over unsafe conditions

By Jerry White, 7 December 2017

Autoworkers at Fiat Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit threatened to walk out December 2 after company and UAW officials ignored their complaints about being sickened by fumes.

“Management tells the UAW what to do and they say, ‘Okay!’”

Chicago Ford workers speak out on death of Coby Hennings

By Marcus Day, 5 December 2017

Ford Chicago Assembly workers denounced the grueling working conditions of TPTs which had led to the death of 21-year-old Coby Hennings six weeks ago at Woodhaven Stamping near Detroit.

“Part-time work in the auto plants is modern day slavery”

Six weeks since the tragic death of US autoworker Jacoby Hennings

By Jerry White, 4 December 2017

Behind the still unexplained death of the young autoworker is the expansion of temporary part-time labor sanctioned by the UAW.

Woodhaven Ford workers speak on still unexplained death of Jacoby Hennings

By Jerry White, 29 November 2017

Ford workers at the Woodhaven Stamping plant spoke on the alleged suicide of the 21-year-old part-time worker at the plant on October 20 that has provoked widespread sympathy among autoworkers.

“It’s like organized crime”

Detroit Manufacturing Systems and the new face of auto parts production

By Nick Rodriguez, 17 November 2017

The profits of auto parts makers are based on the super-exploitation of a layer of low-wage workers, many of whom pay dues to the United Auto Workers.

“We have to make sure Jacoby Hennings didn’t die in vain”

Workers denounce scourge of suicides inside US auto plants

By Jerry White, 15 November 2017

The death of the 21-year-old Ford worker amid a rash of suicides in the industry is an indictment of the United Auto Workers union, which long ago abandoned the defense of workers’ interests.

Another decisive repudiation

Ohio auto glass workers vote 2-1 against the UAW

By Shannon Jones, 11 November 2017

The vote against the UAW took place in an area that was once noted for worker militancy and the scene of pitched class battles.

Tennessee auto parts workers and their families exposed to cancer-causing chemicals

By Warren Duzak, 10 November 2017

Tenneco officials told workers they had been exposed to hexavalent chromium and had likely carried the toxic waste home with them.

More revelations in UAW corruption scandal

Fiat Chrysler CEO Marchionne met with federal investigators last year

By Shannon Jones, 7 November 2017

The reports of Marchionne’s meeting with prosecutors follow reports that the investigation of the illegal diversion of funds from training centers has expanded to Ford and General Motors.

“We are treated like garbage, like we are disposable”

Detroit autoworkers condemn UAW in death of young Ford worker

By a WSWS reporting team, 6 November 2017

All workers confront stressful conditions at the factory, where the workday is 10 hours, and the UAW has long collaborated with the FCA bosses to cut wages and increase production.

UAW-corporate corruption scandal spreads to Ford and GM

By Eric London, 4 November 2017

Workers need workplace and neighborhood committees to advance their interests against the massive corporations that dictate the policies of the government and control the unions.

Federal UAW corruption probe turns to GM and Ford

By Shannon Jones, 3 November 2017

In the wake of the indictment of United Auto Workers officials in relation to the theft of funds from the UAW-Chrysler training center, federal investigators are looking at joint programs funded by General Motors and Ford.

Young Ford worker sought UAW help before apparent suicide

By Jerry White, 3 November 2017

According to a police report obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, 21-year-old Jacoby Hennings spoke with UAW officials for more than an hour before pulling out a gun.

Dominique Morisseau’s Skeleton Crew in Detroit: A drama about the working class

By David Walsh, 3 November 2017

Skeleton Crew takes place in the breakroom of a Detroit stamping plant threatened with closure “somewhere around year 2008.”

030 Police report on autoworker suicide

2 November 2017

Death of Jacoby Hennings highlights UAW collusion with auto companies

By Jerry White, 1 November 2017

The apparent suicide of the 21-year-old Ford worker has revealed the oppressive conditions facing temporary part-time employees in the auto industry.

US auto profits beat expectations despite softening sales

By Shannon Jones, 31 October 2017

Ford, Fiat Chrysler and General Motors all posted higher-than-expected earnings in the third quarter, boosted by savage cost-cutting facilitated by the collaboration of the unions.

Autoworkers take to social media to defend young Ford worker killed in apparent suicide

By Jerry White, 31 October 2017

Hundreds of autoworkers have shared and commented on WSWS articles about the death of 21-year-old Jacoby Marquis Hennings.

Hundreds mourn death of young Ford worker in Detroit

By Jerry White, 30 October 2017

According to coworkers, Jacoby was a hard-working young man who wanted to be hired into a full-time position.

Memorial in Detroit for young autoworker who died in Ford plant

By Jerry White, 28 October 2017

The alleged suicide of Jacoby Hennings at Ford’s Woodhaven Stamping plant has generated widespread sympathy along with anger over the cruel conditions facing young workers.

Lessons of the CAMI autoworkers’ strike in Canada

By Carl Bronski, 28 October 2017

The strike did not fail to achieve its goals due to a lack of readiness among GM workers to fight, but because it was sabotaged by Unifor with its pro-corporate and nationalist agenda.

Worker killed in Indiana auto parts plant

By Jessica Goldstein, 26 October 2017

Melissa Stephens, a mother of four, was killed at a plant owned by Autoneum, which has repeatedly been fined for unsafe conditions.

Autoworkers speak on suicide of young Ford worker at Detroit area plant

By Shannon Jones, 25 October 2017

Low wages, overwork, unsure hours and the lack of job security are all part of the daily routine of part-time temporary workers in the auto industry.

Detroit area Ford worker dies in apparent suicide at stamping factory

By Shannon Jones, 21 October 2017

A young part-time temporary worker at Ford’s Woodhaven Stamping Plant who was facing disciplinary charges apparently took his own life Friday.

Political lessons of the Australian car industry closure

By Oscar Grenfell, 20 October 2017

The shutdowns are the end product of a decades-long restructuring of car manufacturing, spearheaded by Labor and the trade unions.

The Canadian split from the UAW—Lessons for today

By Carl Bronski, 20 October 2017

The defeat of the CAMI strike attests to the failure of the nationalist strategy that Unifor and its predecessor, the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) union, have pursued since splitting from the United Auto Workers in 1985.

Unifor imposes new round of concessions

CAMI strike in Canada ends

“We struck for a month and got nothing”

By Carl Bronski and Jerry White, 17 October 2017

Lacking any confidence that Unifor would oppose GM’s job threats, workers reluctantly accepted another concessionary contract.

No to Unifor-GM blackmail!

Before any ratification vote, CAMI workers must see the full contract and have time to study it

Statement of the WSWS Autoworker Newsletter, 16 October 2017

CAMI workers have not stood out on the picket lines for a month to accept yet another concessionary contract from an auto giant that made $11 billion in profits last year.

Unifor announces deal to end CAMI strike

Reject Unifor-GM blackmail! No vote until CAMI workers have full contract and time to study it!

Statement of the WSWS Autoworker Newsletter, 14 October 2017

Displaying the same contempt for rank-and-file workers it has since the CAMI strike began, Unifor announced it would release no details of the settlement until Monday’s ratification meeting where it expected to pass the deal.

Build rank-and-file committees! Unite Canadian, US and Mexican workers against job cuts!

GM threatens CAMI plant, demands Unifor end month-long strike

By Carl Bronski and Jerry White, 13 October 2017

Workers must break through the conspiracy of silence enforced by union and management and demand all details of the Unifor-GM secret negotiations.

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12 October 2017

Canadian Fiat Chrysler worker: “Stay strong, workers, and demand answers to your questions”

Talks resume in CAMI strike as Unifor continues to isolate embattled workers

By Shannon Jones, 12 October 2017

Canadian autoworkers expressed their solidarity with the striking CAMI workers and denounced last week’s physical assault on a WSWS reporter by a Unifor operative.

205 CAMI strike/UNIFOR assault on WSWS

11 October 2017

Canadian autoworkers warn CAMI strikers on role of Unifor, condemn attack on WSWS

By Shannon Jones, 10 October 2017

Ford and GM workers in Canada expressed their support for striking CAMI workers and denounced the treacherous role of Unifor.

Unifor operative assaults WSWS reporter at CAMI strike rally

By Jerry White, 9 October 2017

The physical attack is aimed not only at silencing the WSWS but at gagging and intimidating rank-and-file workers.

As CAMI strike ends third week, Unifor peddles Canadian nationalism at rally

By Jerry White, 7 October 2017

Unifor is using CAMI workers as pawns in their maneuvers with the Canadian and US governments over renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement.

As CAMI strike continues, Unifor sheds crocodile tears for Mexican workers

By Carl Bronski, 5 October 2017

Dias does not explain how his supposed concern for the plight of Mexican workers squares with the union’s demand that GM lay off workers in Mexico before any workers at CAMI.

Toyota ends car production in Australia

By Will Marshall, 5 October 2017

Having imposed waves of sackings and cuts to conditions, the trade unions are enforcing the “orderly closure” of the Australian car industry.

Unifor, the WSWS Autoworker Newsletter and the politics of the CAMI strike

By Jerry White, 4 October 2017

The struggle to defend jobs and living standards demands politics: not the politics of Unifor—a close ally of the federal and Ontario Liberal governments—but socialist politics.

CAMI workers challenge further de-industrialization of southwestern Ontario

By Carl Bronski, 3 October 2017

To win secure and decent-paying jobs, workers will have to mount a global struggle to end the subordination of all socioeconomic life to capitalist profit.

Unifor president at CAMI picket line: A declaration of bankruptcy

By Jerry White and Carl Bronski, 2 October 2017

Far from advancing any strategy to win the two-week strike, Unifor officials promoted economic nationalism and illusions in Trudeau and Trump.

Unifor leaders plot with GM to beat back resistance of CAMI strikers

By Jerry White, 29 September 2017

The top leadership of the Canadian auto union met with GM executives in Detroit even as the strike by 2,800 CAMI workers continued.

“The contract should be null and void”

Fiat Chrysler workers react to UAW corruption investigation

By Shannon Jones, 29 September 2017

Workers at Fiat Chrysler in Detroit reacted angrily to revelations that top UAW officials received illegal payouts from management to keep them “fat, dumb and happy.”

As Unifor plots to end CAMI strike, corporate press hails union head

By Keith Jones, 27 September 2017

The union is maneuvering to shut the strike down and subordinating the struggle to Unifor’s alliance with the Trudeau Liberal government and its efforts to renegotiate NAFTA.

CAMI autoworkers strike against GM Canada at the crossroads

By Carl Bronski, 26 September 2017

While CAMI workers remained determined, officials from the Unifor union have presented GM Canada with an “olive branch” proposal to shut down the strike.

US autoworkers express support for CAMI strikers in Canada

“We should be out on strike with them”

By Jerry White, 25 September 2017

Despite the sabotage by the auto unions on both sides of the border there is a widespread sentiment for a common struggle against the global carmakers.

Canadian union seeks to shut down CAMI strike by offering concessions to GM

By Roger Jordan, 23 September 2017

Unifor has focused on bolstering its partnership with the big-business Liberal government and promoting reactionary Canadian nationalism.

General Motors and Ford announce thousands of US layoffs

By Shannon Jones, 23 September 2017

The layoffs come amid mounting signs that the seven-year boom in auto sales is collapsing.

Legal appeals of framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers expose travesty of justice

By Saman Gunadasa, 23 September 2017

“The (legal) doubt,” declares one of the appeals, “is not only overwhelming, but in fact, there is hardly any aspect on which the prosecution’s case is at all believable.”

GM Canada strike in danger

Why is Unifor trying to gag CAMI strikers?

By Carl Bronski and Jerry White, 22 September 2017

Officials from the Unifor union said Wednesday that they have offered an “olive branch” to GM to end the strike.

“What these companies are doing is a new form of slavery”

CAMI strikers determined to resist GM Canada job and wage cuts

By Jerry White and Carl Bronski, 21 September 2017

CAMI workers are fighting to defend their jobs and living standards, while Unifor seeks to tie workers to the Liberal government and Trump's anti-Mexican trade war policies.

UAW officials laundered Fiat Chrysler bribes through fake charities

By Shannon Jones, 21 September 2017

The latest revelations in the scandal involving funds diverted from the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center further underscore the anti-worker character of the UAW.

CAMI autoworkers locked in fight against GM Canada over jobs and wages

By Jerry White, 20 September 2017

Autoworkers at the General Motors CAMI plant in Ingersoll, Ontario are locked in a critical battle that raises fundamental questions for autoworkers in Canada and around the world.

For an international strategy to win the CAMI workers strike

By the WSWS Autoworker Newsletter, 19 September 2017

To prevail in the struggle against GM, CAMI workers must fight to mobilize autoworkers across North America in a counter-offensive against all concessions and job cuts.

GM CAMI workers strike in Canada

By Carl Bronski, 18 September 2017

The walkout is part of a growing wave of struggles by autoworkers around the world, including in the US, Korea, Serbia and Slovakia.

IAM ends Chicago area mechanics strike

By Jessica Goldstein, 18 September 2017

After seven weeks of struggle, IAM Local 701 imposed a sellout deal on striking Chicago area mechanics.

Canadian auto union moves to ram through concessions deal on GM CAMI workers

By Carl Bronski, 15 September 2017

With contempt for workers, Unifor officials have called a “ratification/strike” meeting for Sunday without releasing any information about what workers are supposed to vote on.