Local UAW workers not yet called to strike, but ready

Though no plants in mid-Michigan were called to strike yet, UAW workers said they’re willing to fight for what they want.
Published: Sep. 14, 2023 at 11:52 PM EDT
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MID-MICHIGAN (WNEM) - Though no plants in mid-Michigan have been called to strike yet, UAW workers said they’re willing to fight for what they want.

“If we get the call, we get the call, we’re ready to do that,” said Manual Dosal, the chairman of UAW Local 668.

When the clock strikes midnight, UAW union workers could be on the picket lines in what could be a historic strike against Detroit’s three automakers.

“This won’t be the first time for me. And, just about everybody in the plant including some of the temps were out here in 2019. So, they’ve been through it. They understand what it is. It’s just part of the process. And we’re willing to do what we need to do to get a fair deal,” Dosal said.

Union workers are looking for significant pay raises and better benefits saying they want to get back everything they gave up 15 years ago before General Motors declared bankruptcy.

“What was the phrase? An honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay. And the work part has been there. The pay part hasn’t. It’s just we have not been made whole from the 15 years of saving this company. I mean, that’s half a generation. We spent half a generation to save this company,” said Luigi Gjokaj, a Stellantis worker and vice president of UAW Local 51.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said getting a deal done between the groups is critical.

“It’s important that workers have a good contract, but also critical that the Big Three can continue doing the work that they’re doing, because it’s an important inflection point right now, in this industry and in our state,” she said.

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