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Incoming UAW chief: In rebound, automakers should reward union

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Incoming UAW chief: In rebound, automakers should reward union

BY BRENT SNAVELY

FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER

Bob King, the likely future president of the UAW, said union members have made tremendous sacrifices in recent years to help save the domestic automakers and the companies should be prepared to reward union members as the industry recovers.

"There was equality of sacrifice, there has got to be equality of gain," said King, a UAW vice president who is the union’s nominee to be elected president at a constitutional convention in June.

That includes Ford, King said, where the union has filed grievances with the company over its decision to restore merit pay, 401(k) contributions and other benefits to salaried workers but not hourly workers.

“That’s wrong. Our membership made tremendous sacrifices and we had an understanding about equality of sacrifice,” King said.

King said the UAW and Ford are close to resolving part of the union’s dispute over but may take other aspects of their complaints into arbitration.

King, 63, made his comments following a speech Tuesday at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s automotive conference in Detroit titled, “A new role for labor? Partner and owner.”

Throughout his speech, King said the union has proved in recent years that it is capable of adapting to new challenges in the automotive industry and working with the domestic automakers to help them through times of crisis.

In 2007, for example, the union agreed to take over the responsibility of managing retiree health care from the automakers.

King also said the average UAW worker has sacrificed between $7,000 and $30,000 in pay and benefits over the past 10 years.

“We did a tremendous amount of things to keep the corporations viable,” King said.

However, King stopped short of saying that the UAW will be looking to win back wage and benefit concessions when its four-year labor contract with the UAW expires in September, 2011.

“The economic situation at that time will have a huge impact on what we set,” King said.

link:

http://www.freep.com/article/20100511/BUSINESS01/100511050/1210/Incoming-UAW-chief-In-rebound-automakers-should-reward-union

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i really had few issues with the government bailing out GM.

however, what i completely hated about it was the union getting stock.

it would be nice to get rid of the union.

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or the fact the union was a huge part of why they couldn't make money on their cars?...besides most of them being lack luster.

baby says what? we gave, now give back to us. where it should be is you survived the trip, and pretty well in fact, now shut up!

just shows the entitlement mentality needed to be eviscerated by the chapter-11, but uncle sam came to the rescue.

Reg--- GM, the unions, and us will deserve what's coming.

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