Has The Airline Industry Saved Windsor
Respecting Air Canada as an example (and the CAW being one of the unions involved), CBC reported that
- "Air Canada's employees paid a heavy price for the airline's financial woes. Thousands lost their jobs in difficult downsizing negotiations; those that remained had to take pay cuts.
Creditors had to settle for a fraction of the billions they were owed. And the airline's shareholders were left holding stock that became virtually worthless."
Is the same pattern going to take place in the auto industry with Delphi being the test case for the Big Three perhaps? Will Chapter 11 or restructuring under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act in Canada become the norm to get concessions that otherwise could never be achieved? ie either go along and make sacrificies or bankruptcy with plants closing and jobs lost forever
Here are excerpts from a story I found in Forbes magazine recently:
- "GM, Delphi, UAW Continue Negotiating
Delphi's recent actions against the United Auto Workers union has cast a long shadow over General Motors.
The UAW has vowed to strike if the bankruptcy court agrees with Delphi’s request to throw out its union contracts...
For now, the analyst says GM, Delphi and UAW will continue to negotiate. Delphi’s two motions with the bankruptcy court request the authority to reject U.S. labor agreements and unprofitable supply contracts with General Motors. Delphi has requested new contracts on nearly half of its annual North American purchase volume revenue from GM, worth about $6 billion.
The union is doubtless upset over plans for restructuring at Delphi, which would require cutting its global salaried workforce by 25%, closing nearly one-third of its manufacturing base and doing away with about 40% of its corporate officer positions, says Murphy. Delphi also says it can’t sustain current wages for its hourly workers and would have to decrease wages by 25% to $16.50."
Will Windsor workers see big pay and benefits cuts and accept them or will they strike and perhaps see plants closed down and moved to other locations? If wages are lowered and it appears that the power of the unions has been reduced will the new Domestics consider moving to Windsor? Can the local economy stand a reduction of 25% of wages and what will happen to those with large debts and mortages that were to be paid off by the higher wages?
There are many questions to ask and I do not have any of the answers. If a reader does have a comment or opinion to give, feel free to write and I will provide a forum for your views!