Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Why not? You've already accepted two-tier labour contracts.

TORONTO, March 25 (Reuters) - The Canadian Auto Workers union will not accept a U.S.-style two-tier wage deal when it meets with the "Big Three" automakers this summer for contract negotiations, union President Buzz Hargrove said on Tuesday.

"We are not accepting second-class workers in our workplaces," Hargrove told reporters in Toronto.

Lest we forget...

Buzz Hargrove, president of the Canadian Auto Workers, is now attacking the very foundations of an independent union. He has proposed an agreement with Magna International that denies workers exactly those powers that underpin the right of collective bargaining, namely the right to strike and to elect their own shop stewards. Workers have achieved some control over their lives and places of work precisely because they have won those rights. Without them, in the significant imbalance of power that exists between management and labour, "dignity, liberty and autonomy" become hollow words.

Mr. Hargrove's proposal eliminates worker-selected shop stewards. Instead, he proposes "employee advocates." Management would play a key role in selecting these "advocates."

The proposal also gives Magna what they want even more: a denial of the right to strike. Having completely defanged the power of working men and women, in language that can only be described as Orwellian doublespeak, Mr. Hargrove actually says his proposal offers "maximum worker participation." It is hard to imagine what "participation" means if it excludes the most basic democratic right to select your own representatives.

2 comments:

Alison said...

Unsubstantiated but not exactly a surprise if true :

From Newswatch via A BCer in Toronto :
"Ottawa is abuzz with rumours that the CAW's Buzz Hargrove will run for the Liberals in the next federal election.. and he plans to take on a big fish....

Rumour has it that Buzz Hargrove will run in Toronto, against NDP Leader, Jack Layton..."

Cliff said...

I think he might find his 'labour cred' is a bit past its best before date. A lot of people seem to be starting to see him for the back room back slapper that he is.

You're out on the coast Alison - ask some TWU Telus employees some time what they think of Hargrove and the CAW. One of the TWU's recent Presidents was basically driven out of office in disgrace over all but open collusion in an all but open raiding attempt. The maneuverings and bitterness have continued according to the folks involved that I'm still friendly with.

After Magna though, I don't know what any union would consider the incentive of joining up with a union that seems more concerned with collecting dues than protecting rights.

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