auto workers http://michiganradio.org en Keeping An Eye On Chrysler http://michiganradio.org/post/keeping-eye-chrysler <p><font color="#000000" face="Arial" id="role_document" size="2"><font size="4"><font size="4"><font size="4">There was a fair amount of anxiety in automotive circles over the new contracts hammered out between the United Auto Workers union and Ford and General Motors. GM remains the largest Detroit automaker, and this was the first post-bankruptcy contract.</font></font></font></font></p> Fri, 21 Oct 2011 13:53:42 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 4659 at http://michiganradio.org Keeping An Eye On Chrysler Auto Talks: Far From Over http://michiganradio.org/post/auto-talks-far-over <p><font color="#000000" face="Arial" id="role_document" size="2"><font size="4"><font size="4"><font size="4">There&rsquo;s a great deal of celebration going on over the fact that General Motors and the United Auto Workers union have reached tentative agreement on a new, four-year contract.</font></font></font></font></p><p><font color="#000000" face="Arial" size="2"><font size="4"><font size="4"><font size="4">In the old days, what this would have meant was speedy ratification, followed by a similar settlement with Chrysler within perhaps two weeks, and then Ford maybe a month later.</font></font></font></font></p><p><font color="#000000" face="Arial" size="2"><font size="4"><font size="4"><font size="4">That was the era of pretty much one-size-fits all pattern bargaining agreements. But that was before the near-death and the resurrection of Chrysler and GM, and it&rsquo;s now a different world.</font></font></font></font></p><p><font color="#000000" face="Arial" size="2"><font size="4"><font size="4"><font size="4">I spent some time yesterday with one of the best industry analysts around -- Kristin Dziczek, who heads the labor and industry group at CAR, the non-profit Center for Automotive Research based in Ann Arbor. Dziczek knows the management spokesmen and the economists, and has friends and relatives who are in the UAW. She eats, breathes, and sleeps this stuff.</font></font></font></font></p><p> Tue, 20 Sep 2011 14:57:05 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 4222 at http://michiganradio.org Auto Talks: Far From Over A look back: UAW, Detroit auto workers and labor relations http://michiganradio.org/post/look-back-uaw-detroit-auto-workers-and-labor-relations <p>http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/michigan/local-michigan-979476.mp3</p><p>Once again Michigan Radio&rsquo;s political analyst Jack Lessenberry unleashes his knowledge of Michigan history. This time we get a historical perspective about negotiations between the United Auto Workers and Detroit automakers.</p><p>Contract talks have already started between the UAW and General Motors, Chrysler and Ford. But these talks are a little different this time around.</p> Wed, 27 Jul 2011 21:48:26 +0000 Jennifer White 3495 at http://michiganradio.org A look back: UAW, Detroit auto workers and labor relations Historical: Union power, past and present (audio) http://michiganradio.org/post/historical-union-power-past-and-present-audio <p>Seventy years ago, Ford Motor Company recognized the UAW.&nbsp; Ford was the last major automaker to recognize the union, and that decision marked the starting point of the union&rsquo;s &ldquo;Golden Age.&rdquo;</p><p>In this interview, Michigan Radio&#39;s Jenn White talks with Jack Lessenberry, Michigan Radio&rsquo;s political analyst about unions past and present. And what lessons can be learned from those &quot;golden years.&quot;</p><p>http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/michigan/local-michigan-971398.mp3</p><p>In 1941, the UAW signed contracts with General Motors and Chrysler, but Henry Ford remained opposed to unionization. After several days of strikes Ford gave in and soon after the first contracts took effect.</p><p> Fri, 03 Jun 2011 20:30:00 +0000 Mercedes Mejia 2708 at http://michiganradio.org Historical: Union power, past and present (audio) Auto worker for a day http://michiganradio.org/post/auto-worker-day <p>Hundreds of auto workers will be assembling Chevy Sonics and Buick Veranos at GM&#39;s plant in Orion Township in just a few months.&nbsp;</p><p>Every one of those workers will go through a simulated work environment training exercise before getting anywhere near a real car. The power tools and the bolts are real, but the cars and parts are made of wood.&nbsp;</p><p>GM recently invited a group of auto journalists to take part in the exercise, to get a taste of what building a car is like.</p><p>The press is divided up into teams. Team 3&#39;s leader is Sabrina Wills, a member of UAW Local 602. She instructs us how to do the work, with each step meticulously standardized.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;Once the line starts moving, if the line moves at a normal pace, you&rsquo;re gonna find yourself in the hole,&quot; she says.</p></blockquote><p>Joanne Muller of Forbes asks,&nbsp;&quot;So what do we do then?&quot;</p><p>Wills:&nbsp;&nbsp;&quot;You&rsquo;re gonna pull for help.&nbsp; Pull your andon cord.&quot;</p><p>Team 3 will install the headlights, taillights, and bumpers. Wills says dropping a nut is par for the course when you&rsquo;re new to the job. But the cardinal sin is dropping a part. In real life, that means it&rsquo;s scrap.&nbsp;</p><p>She drops a part on the cement floor to make a point. The sound reverberates through the big factory.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;You&rsquo;re gonna hear the part hit the floor.&nbsp;&nbsp;So don&rsquo;t try to hide it under the line, because we don&rsquo;t wanna put that broken headlight on a car.&quot;</p></blockquote><p>As we wait for the line to start, Joanne Muller &ndash; who, by the way, has red hair &ndash; brings up that classic &quot;I Love Lucy&quot; episode. The one where Ethel and Lucy fall behind on the assembly line in a chocolate factory. Fri, 01 Apr 2011 03:37:35 +0000 Tracy Samilton 1878 at http://michiganradio.org Auto worker for a day