UAW Strike News Roundup! NY Workers Join the Fight, Solidarity Rally, Historic Presidential Visit and How to Help
With the UAW entering its third week on strike today, 5,600 workers at 38 parts distribution plants operated by Stellantis and GM have now joined the 12,900 workers at GM's Wentzville, MO plant, Ford's Michigan Assembly plant and Stellantis' Toledo, OH Jeep plant who walked off the job on September 15th. Among those answering the call to join the Stand Up Strike are the first workers here in New York, more than 75 members of UAW Local 3039 at the Stellantis parts distribution center in Tappan.
Local 3039 President Jeff Purcells (pictured here) was on hand in NYC on Wednesday for a powerful UAW Region 9/9A solidarity picket with members of SAG-AFTRA and the WGA East, alongside the NYC CLC, elected officials including City Comptroller Brad Lander, and hundreds of supporters from unions across every sector of New York City. Leadership from each union expressed their commitment to standing strong together and making sure that no union and no member is left behind. Find more photos from our UAW Solidarity Picket Album here!
History was also made this week when President Joe Biden became the first sitting President ever to walk a picket line with striking workers, joining members of Local 174 Willow Run in Belleville, Michigan on Tuesday.
"You’ve heard me say it many times, Wall Street didn’t build the country," said the President. "The middle class built the country, and unions built the middle class. And that’s a fact. So, let’s keep going. You deserve what you’ve earned, and you’ve earned a hell of a lot more than you’re getting paid now." Watch video of the visit here and read the full remarks here.
In another show of solidarity, the Labor Network for Sustainability (LNS), which hosted a webinar for environmentalists to build support and understanding in advance of the UAW strike in August, this week issued a statement in support of the UAW and all workers and communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis and the necessary transition. The statement, which has now been signed by more than 130 environmental and community organizations, calls on the Big Three's CEOs to either do right by the workers who have sacrificed to keep their companies profitable, or "face a united labor, environmental, and climate movement standing in solidarity, ready to fight side by side with UAW workers in winning their demands."
UAW members are striking because they have to, in order to ensure that every job is a union job with union-set standards. The Big Three companies have made record profits, so we know they can afford it. The stakes couldn’t be higher for 150,000 UAW members and their families.
Here's how to help this week:
1. Come to Saturday's Rally at the GM Building in NYC-- Scroll down to upcoming events for details.
2. If you're able to get to Tappan, join Local 3039's picket line at 108 NY 303.
4. Call 318-300-1249 and leave a voice message for the Big Three CEOs “Give UAW workers the same 40% wage increase you got!”