Kokomo Fiat Chrysler workers kept in dark by UAW following strike vote


“The UAW cannot be trusted”

Kokomo Fiat Chrysler workers kept in dark by UAW following strike vote

Shannon Jones

4 August 2018


Two weeks after Fiat Chrysler workers at the company’s transmission operations in the Kokomo, Indiana area voted overwhelmingly for strike authorization, the United Auto Workers is maintaining a news blackout.

The overwhelming strike authorization vote demonstrated the determination of Kokomo transmission workers to fight. However, the UAW has no intention of leading a serious struggle over accumulated grievances and deteriorating conditions in the factories, including mistreatment of temporary part-time (TPT) workers.

Given the restive mood of workers, UAW Local 685 President Rick Ward felt compelled to warn against rumors of an impending strike. In a message to Kokomo transmission workers, he wrote, “I cannot emphasize enough, in the event we do strike YOU WILL BE NOTIFIED BY YOUR ELECTED UNION OFFICIALS ON THE FLOOR, anything else is pure B.S.”

The UAW has now issued a brief announcement that informational union meetings will be held on Monday, without providing any further details on negotiations.

On the part of Local 685 officials, talk of a strike over accumulated grievances is little more than political theatre. Local officials are attempting to posture as stalwart defenders of workers interests under conditions in which top UAW officials have been implicated in a corrupt scheme to divert money from joint training centers to fund lavish spending.

The fact that UAW Vice President for Fiat Chrysler Cindy Estrada has been involved in negotiations is a further warning of the bogus nature of the talks. Estrada played a central role in ramming through the 2015 sellout contract. Meanwhile, her private…

Read more