American Axle strike

Company demands wage drop from $23 to $14 an hour

***Most Recent Headlines For American Ale can be found here:***

American Axle Strike (Rev 5- links above updated 4/27/08)

From American Axle strikers defy UAW wage-cutting pattern 2-29-08

“There is a war on the middle class,” another worker said. “People are losing their homes, while the banks and the rich are getting more profits. They preach they are creating more jobs—but what kind of pay are these jobs? The companies are carrying out whipsawing internationally.”

Another worker with 14 years told the WSWS “It is part of a global conspiracy to cut wages worldwide that seeks to use workers all over the world as cheap labor.”

Commenting on the elections, he added, “Nothing will change whether Obama or Clinton comes in. Whoever gets in there does what he is told; however, the majority of people are brainwashed into supporting the Democrats or Republicans.”

Brian, another worker who came to the plant in the mid-1990s, said, “How are you going to survive on $14 an hour? Everything is going up in cost. We built what Dauch has. I don’t want to take a cut. This is not a Third World country like the place he is building his plants.

“They say this is the richest country in the world—why can’t wages stay the same? It’s corporate greed. How much money do they have to make—billions? Leave my wages the way they are.”

Commenting on the assault on auto workers jobs throughout the world, he added, “I read in the paper that BMW is laying off thousands of workers.

What can the outcome be, according to Buffalo News, not so grand: Axle strikers don’t have much leverage 2-03-08
“If [vehicles] were selling, the strike would be settled,” said Arthur Wheaton, director of Buffalo labor studies for Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations.

Striking workers are also feeling pressure on their wages, which the company’s chairman and chief executive officer, Richard Dauch, argues are far higher than workers at competitors like Delphi and Dana receive.

According to the UAW, the company wants to cut workers’ wages from $28 per hour to $14 per hour. Dauch says the UAW agreed to wage-cutting moves at Dana and Delphi and should do the same at American Axle.
and continues
American Axle isn’t strictly a U.S. company anymore, compared to when it was founded in 1994. It now has 10,000 employees at 30 facilities worldwide.

And while the company’s overall work force is 33 percent larger than at its formation, American Axle has trimmed its U.S. hourly work force by almost half since 2004, after two buyout programs and worker attrition.

Its local work force was cut in half last year after 558 workers at the now-idled East Delavan plant accepted buyouts. American Axle’s current area employment is only about a quarter of what it was a decade ago, when 2,400 local workers had jobs at its plants here.

In a conference call with auto analysts a few weeks ago, Dauch praised the company’s ever-growing manufacturing plant in Mexico, which he called the center of the company’s North American expansion efforts.

Within the next three to five years, Dauch said the company expects its Guanajuato, Mexico, site to become the company’s “largest and most diverse manufacturing facility.” He also lauded its forging operation in Mexico as “world class,” adding: “There is not a better forging operation in the world than our location.”

By 2012, the company expects its non-U.S. manufacturing activity to grow to more than 50 percent, as it adds or expands plants in places like Poland, Brazil, China, Thailand and India.
NAFTA, WTO and the other free trade agreements have destroyed this country. Good luck American Axle workers, if I were closer I would walk the line with you.

More links
American Axle Workers Strike
American Axle workers expect long strike
American Axle strike impact widens
UAW Official: Ready For ‘Serious Bargaining’ On American Axle


Anonymous said...

hope they meet in the middle and get to the 19$ range and get this thing settled or they may pakit up and move it to mexico!

jolyna said...

My husband is an employee of AAM. It is simple, we CANT take a pay cut like that. We wont be able to afford our home. Forget about our standard of living. They are speaking is a pay cut to $11.40 an hour. That is over a 60% cut. He started there i4 yrs ago at $12.50. Now, 11.40??? Are u kidding? And people think this is justified? Yes, AAM made money and maybe it wasn't what they hoped for but they need to remember all the buy outs that they paid out last yr. Buyouts that aren't going to be repeated this year. Those ople are gone so inturn so is that expense.
My family has already taken a 75% cut in my pay. I am a Realtor here in Michigan. I have started a second job to try and come up with the difference. We CANT take another pay cut like that. I refuse to stand for it and am willing to stand beside my husband and all the AAM employees and fight for what is rightfully ours and what my husband was promised 14 yrs ago when he started at AAM.
I expect better from Dick Dauch. All those times he told us he was for American Jobs, Jobs in Detroit, Keeping our original 5 plants and always stating how he was going to be there for us. What happened to all of that? I'll tell you...GREED!

Anonymous said...

I am a production worker at the Oshawa Truck Plant and fully support what you are doing. We are currently laid off due to your strike and hope with all hope that you reach a resolve in your favour. DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO CUT YOUR PAY!!! Those greedy ***holes are in it for profit and nothing else. We are not a third world country and deserve better then this. We need to stand strong at this time and support each other!

In Solidarity, a sister from Canada

Anonymous said...

I am an employee of AGS Automotive in Oshawa Ontario and currently laid off due to the strike.Although it hurts financially(we don't get sub pay)I support the strikers at AAM.This is getting way out of control.The companies want to keep cutting wages and benefits, well answer me this..are they going to cut our gas bills in half? what about my mortgage or medical bills? how about insurance or grocery bills? gas for my truck? forget about it!We went on strike 2 years ago just to keep what we had and for a .10 raise over 3 years..yes i
said .10 cents!And companies wonder why sales are down! geez maybe they are in the wrong business.I would not be suprised if GM is backing AAM and telling them to stick to their guns.I honestly believe that all the companies have come up with a plan to stick together and chop away at we have worked for for most of our lives. It has got to stop and we as regular hard working
people must stick together, Canadians and Americans alike.THIS CARNAGE HAS GOT TO STOP!!!hrdep

Joe638NYC said...

My god jolyna, all I can do is write and spread the word, my heart goes out to you and your family. The corporate warfare against us must stop. Your husband and the other workers made American Axle what it is today, a profitable company. Now they turn their back. It is happening to all workers, everywhere. Keep spreading the word, keep posting all over the web. Your fight must be heard. Your fight is our fight. As the other 2 posters stated, all workers must stick together in these dire times.

In Solidarity,

Anonymous said...

I am a production worker for a supplier of AAM in Canada. AAM makes up about half of the orders in my plant, and like the people in Oshawa we are also facing a layoff because of the strike. We've also just gone through a major restructuring including heavy cuts to wages and benefits, so to all of our friends at AAM we understand your position and we're behind you! Isn't it sad that heartless corporate greed can affect so many people in such a huge way?! I hope they're happy with thier billions of dollars while we all lose our homes.

Anonymous said...

Hey. I work at GM, and a good portion of the truck plants ( the most profitable) are down for parts. The corp. is trying to do the same thing to us. Hang in there, and hang tough. You'll make it through, and your UAW brothers and sisters are behind you! Dan

Anonymous said...

If anyone has ever been to that plant one would know that they are actually over paid for the most part for the work they are doing. If you are looking for a quality part from the workers there, turn to another source. For the money they are getting now they need to put more effort into the parts they are making. If most people actually understood what a UAW member in that plant gets just for being a member they would be shocked. No other worker out there gets those perks for doing their job, while people there that don't want to work get supported to do that by their brothers and their sisters.

Maybe to save their wages they should look at giving up some of the unneeded programs that they have and don't truely require. Most people for what ever reason can survive on a smaller wage and live within their means. Not a UAW member, because they expect everything should be given to them and nothing in return.

I just wonder how many people out there think its fair to pay someone almost 30 an hour to sit around on the shop floor reading because they just don't feel like working today. And no worries about getting into trouble since you have your union to get your job back for not doing your job to begin with.

I think wage cuts are needed all around to help make noth american auto manufacturing strong again. Until the two terms Company and Union become one, the end of noth american auto manufacturing is just around the corner.

On a side note, foreign automotive that has come into the country pays the same type of hourly wages as these members have and benefits. One difference, no union.

Anonymous said...

i think you've all had it too good for too long and think you 'deserve' high pay when you dont. you're all just lucky to have jobs and thats just that- if you cant afford your 200K house in the suburbs then boo-hoo you'll have to sell it!!- along with your gas guzzling SUV and your new car and your big truck in the garage ect,ect...
im a truck driver and i run to the GM plant and this is the second time in the past few months i am losing money due to union strikers and im sick of hearing about how bad you bunch of cry babys think you have it. now im going to have to go over the road and leave my family and who knows when ill be back to see them because of all of you whiney cry babys. ive been looking for a job and i cant find one - where's my union job so i can make over 50K a year and bitch and piss and moan about it and go on strike?

Anonymous said...

I am a production worker for a supplier of AAM. My plant has been shutdown as of today. My personal feeling is most of you are overpaid anyway. I'm a skilled worker making a lil less than mid twentys per h/r. Keep in mind thats a maint. tech pay. Our non skilled workers start out around the 11 - 12 range i think. Why would any non skilled worker ever be paid those kinda wages is beyond me. Go Back To Work!!!

Joe638NYC said...

Wow, three negative anonymous posts that don't include any factual evidence in their postings. Please while I edit posting bullshit such as what is in their thoughts, I feel that none of the three are sincere.

Anonymous said...

I work for AAM and the work is not as easy as many of the paper pushers might lead you to believe. It’s not so much what AAM want you to believe that other people in this county/world are make these so called same parts for but it’s the quality. We have world class quality. Would you want to drive in a vehicle made by the lowest bidder? What happens when that Axle locks up on the freeway at 70 mph because of poor workmanship?
This is the same logic the auto companys tell you when you get your car fixed by non certified repair men/women. The whole GM Goodrich certified repair men and parts.

As far as the money is concerned it would be different if I took the job at 10-14 dollars per hr. I could build my life style around that idea or find a better job that pays better. Now after 10 yrs + you build a life style according to what you make. Why should I lose my house because of corporate greed? Big Dick as they call him actually makes more that the CEO of GM but we are a supplier and cannot expect to make the same wages.

Anonymous said...

i work for another parts supplyer and on 1/2 hours but i still think the workers at aam are doing the wright thing because the america sooner or later is moving our jobs to mexico how much money you make is insignificant aam wants the workers to come back and work intell the mexico plants are completed its not hurting gm( the 200+ days of invintory)just lucky i guess

Anonymous said...

I work for GKN Sintered Metals. We are pretty much shut down at the moment due to all this, and I just want to say that we are going through a pay cut also. I completely support your strike, I just wish we were union too so I could support this cause like you all are. Don't listen to the negativity that is sure to come from this. The posters that tell you to suck it up are selfish and are used to laying down and taking it when their companies say they have to make concessions. Many of the people at my plant are like that too but some of us see the bigger picture. This isn't Mexico or China where companies can get away with this. Keep your heads up, and don't settle for less than you can handle. You will probably have to give a little, but in the end you will adjust if it is somewhat fair.

Winterstars07 said...

I work at a factory in Walker,Mi and my whole plant had to be laid off due to what's going on. There are so many rumors going around stating that this is all about workers making between $45 and $65 an hour and wanting more money. I am glad I looked it up for myself. I started off working at $7.75 an hour and am only up to $8.25, it's hard enough living off that. I hope that this can all come to an end soon. I know that not only myself but many other people are taking a hard hit on money. There is bills to pay, cost of living isn't always the best and not to mention gas prices. Why even have to make pay cuts? So many companys keep hiring more people, then complain because they can't afford to pay the same amount they are as of right now. Honestly stop hiring people for things that others in the company can do, maybe they will be able to afford it. What exactly happened to more money and more jobs from our wonderful Governer of Michigan? As for those having to go though this, I wish you the best of luck, and hope for others and myself a quick return to work.

Anonymous said...

A letter to Dick Dauch

It is no secret that AAM and the UAW are at odds with the new contract. It is no secret that the rumors, of the proposed contracts, are going to hurt thousands of families. And, it is no secret that we, as AAM families, simply can’t stand for it.
AAM states the Detroit facilities are losing money. Consequently, it is our fault and we need to take a pay cut to adjust their profits accordingly. Well, I wonder if Mr. Dauch knows how his plant is mismanaged and that he is misinformed by his management. There are quite a few costly issues with the Forge. Issues that have been discussed with management numerous times. Issues that could save AAM considerable amounts of money. He needs to come down to the floor and speak with the men and women that work hard for him and honestly know the” ins and outs” of their machines and departments. He would hear honest opinions and thorough suggestions that would better productivity. It would change his idea of what his workers really do and in time will even see better profits. I guarantee it!

Processes are not clarified. Like re-run steel; steel is scrapped after it is run through the induction heater twice. No documentation supports this action. The Quality Supervisor states steel can be run through more than twice. Usually this steel is scrapped. Many racks of this steel are scrapped annually. How much money is lost on a whole rack of good steel being tossed out.

We had a period of time where no Preventative Maintenance had been performed on the Upsetters for many years. Employee’s are blamed for these machines not running or when we can’t obtain a quality part.

Supervisors just want to be a boss. It’s all about clicking with the Upper Management and covering their own rears not the hourly employees. Supervisors just want to look good for Dauch and Upper Management. We have been told, on Numerous occasions, when Dauch walks through the plants, to just keep the machines running even if we are only making scrap. They think they are showing Dauch that we are “running strong”. Dauch needs to walk in Unannounced. He will see the real way his plant is being run. It is like a dog and pony show if they know he is coming through.

Shotblast and Bender Operators become supervisors. An Agricultural Engineer running the Upset Department? Finance people become Area Supervisors and then Plant Managers? How can a 3 month Supervisor tell a 14 year vet what to do and how he should do it? Who would you want to teach you on the workings of an Upsetter; Management with a degree that has nothing to do with Manufacturing or an employee that has been running and repairing that machine for 14 years? These people have no idea the skillfulness and intricate modifications that are done to produce a quality part. Some of these modifications are needed due to the lack of preventive maintenance mentioned above.

There has been “big money” wasted on past processes that we don’t use anymore. Example: We implemented a new tagging system that failed TWICE. How many hours were wasted organizing and building this system, TWICE? How much in materials wasted, TWICE? By the way, we aren’t using this system …again. Yet, you won’t listen to the suggestions that will really save you money. Like the scrap mentioned above, or cutting small rubber mats out of the big used rubber mats to save money. Why buy small ones when we can reuse big ones? How many thousands of dollars would that have saved over the years? Somehow Management doesn’t think it’s a good idea! Who makes these decisions? I want to see them on St. Aubin begging for their jobs. These are some of the reasons why we feel we are being set up for failure. Imagine the money saved if someone listened to us years ago. Really, years ago.

AAM spent $150,000 to develop a class that would train and instruct us on how to run and repair an Upsetter. 4 people took the course (I was one of them) and there were numerous errors in the textbook and on the video. This is a training video and there is a safety violation RIGHT ON THE VIDEO! It is a shame that an hourly worker is looked at as disposable and useless. It is ironic that the same employee is the one who is correcting your textbook and has to educate the “teacher” on the finer points of Forging.

We have gone for years without the proper tools. At one time we had them. Then Management took them and threw them away because they were going to “re-do” the system. We have never received replacement tools. This causes much more down time and consequently money is wasted…again.

As we all know, Toyota is an important client. Then why is the quench protection for Hino shafts barely operable? Equipment is broken. The process is hardly documented; as we have been instructed to do. The whole process needs to be re-evaluated. Good parts are continually being scrapped in large quantities. Modifying this process would save a lot of money for AAM and maybe even Toyota.

Then there are safety issues. There is plexiglass in the windows of an overhead crane. OSHA standards require shatterproof glass. Maybe I should mention the Upset crane that doesn’t have brakes. The list can really go on and on. Safety issues are ignored until we are fined or somebody gets hurt. 2 ½ years it took to put a mirror inside the bay door of the Upset department so Hi-lo’s won’t injure people.

While Mr. Dauch, was at Chrysler, he was quoted as saying “We would go in, stop operations, and talk to people” You felt it was important to hear what the workers had to say. Why not now when it is YOUR OWN company? Who better to give you insight on the struggles or successes on the floor? It has been said that you are purposely ignoring these issues because you want the Forge to fail. We know you want to shut it down. And who better to blame than the hourly employees that manufacture these products. I don’t want to believe that. Who in their right mind would want any part of their company to purposely fail? But how can such a shrewd businessman let all of this go on under his nose and be none the wiser?

I don’t need to quote all AAM and Dauch’s profits,. We have heard it many times. We all know about his large salary, bonuses etc while the company lost 222 million dollars in 2006. We are all aware of the bonuses of Upper Management. But not one of them are willing to take a cut. Do you even consider the consequences your actions are going to have on our families? 3600+ people will lose their homes and maybe even their cars. Some of your employees have spouses or other family members here too. So, in their case you are affecting two salaries in one household. In our situation, my wife has already taken a pay cut similar to the one we have heard you suggest. We simply can’t do it again. I am a forth generation Forge employee. I have worked for your company for 14 years. We have built a life around AAM and our pay. You can’t just take 60% of our pay and benefits and not expect a fight. What is left after I pay benefits with $11.40 an hr? How can I support my family with that? How would you support your family with that? With gas going to $4.00 a gallon, how can I even drive to work on that? Of course we prefer to keep things as is. I will help pay my medical. I will even agree to taking my COLA away. (Which will save you an estimated 30 million with Cola alone). But to cut my wages the way you want to, you will have to offer a “buy out” or “buy down”. I hear you don’t want to do that. This almost seems impossible to believe. Are you so callous as to leave all these families bankrupt and homeless? I know it sounds extreme but it is very true.

With all this said; I have to say I know you have a negative opinion of the hourly worker. You feel that we are all replaceable and indispensable. I can assure you I am not. I am that worker who gives 110%. I go over and beyond. My Supervisors never have to tell me what to do because it is already done. I am never someone who says “that isn’t my job”. I can run and problem solve an Upsetter better than most people on the floor and any Manager that has come through this plant in my 14 yrs. I gave you 14 years of dedicated service and I deserve the respect as such.

Joe638NYC said...

Thank you everyone for responding, It has opened my eyes to a lot of horrible work conditions, especially in the non-union area of the auto parts industry. The last post made me create a new story. An open letter to the AAM cofounder and CEO, Dick Dauch, I also wrote about the failure of the BIG 3 in creating state of the art and mandated vehicles which is going to hurt them and the North American worker eventually. Scab truck driver and local police lead to arrest of 3 American Axle picketers and the BIG 3 not meeting the needs of our future mandatory vehicle. Please keep posting your stories. I'll try to keep writing and spreading the message. I hope AAM can start to negotiate a fairer package.

In Solidarity,

Anonymous said...

Why is automotive dead in michigan. two words.... the union. Look at foriegn automotive, no union, yet same pay and same benifits. Why are they not in michigan but every else... the union.

Automotive is automotive. Union says avoid foriegn yet the company they support and work for ship cars to our market and they do not say a word. I wonder if its for the reason that they may make a small component in the vehichle. When GM ships a car here that is made over seas they do not complain. If it was a Toyoda they would. Why, because Toyoda is not union. I am tired of the double standard. They need to wake up and lose that 5 dollar an hour cost of living that no one else has and join the rest of us. If they can't, does that mean they think they are better then the rest of the common worker in these fields and the fields supporting them.

Join the rest of us, work for you money and do a good job and what you do. That is what will bring back the market to us and everyone else.

On a side note, remember Buffalo and what became of that plant. Where did that go... mexico right. Wake up detroit keep your jobs and grow the business. Take a look at chysler... they are expanding in Michigan... learn from them and put what they did into work for Detroit or soon you all will be like Buffalo. Just remember that world head quaters is only leased from the city.

Anonymous said...

Hello, I work for a company in Pittsburg, KS. Our plant is one of a few around the country. What we do there is make wheels, or rather we did make wheels. We are down to about 1/3 our operating capacity. This is due to the strike at American Axle. As I have only been an employee there for just over six months, my job is now in jeporady. But I am only one of a thousand people who work here, But I must correct myself one of a couple hundred now that the strike is stopping our production. I do not make as much as the workers there at American Axle, I make just enough to almost get by. If this strike continues I will be forced to take a GREAT cut in pay and apply for work elsewhere. I do not like the thought of this, but it is not up to me. I can see both sides of this argument and understand them also, still this strike is affecting more than just their company and GM, it is affecting the company I work for here in Kansas.
There is a song that all sides concerned should take knowledge from. This is a song about two people trying to get along together but have different views. This song is title "Meet in the Middle".
If neither side is willing to make a way to talk then the company with the most money will take their buisness somewhere else. And Where will that leave the workers.... Looking for work when their jobs are sent south of the border for wages that are $2.00 an hour and getting shoddy parts sent to the United States. Or their jobs are sent overseas for even less pay.
We as citizens of the United States of America do not like to back down, or give in, although there are alternatives to giving in, meet in the middle, bend some on BOTH sides.

Anonymous said...

My husband is a delivery driver for a company that supplies parts to AAM. His job has been affected because nearly everybody at that plant has been laid off. I think it is ridiculous that any person without a college degree or in a skilled trade can make the kind of money the people at AAM do. That is a thing of the past and AAM would be able to find quality people to work for $13/hour. Michigan is in trouble with the highest unemployment in the country and we have people fighting to keep jobs that pay way more than they should. Watch out - they will just move this factory to Mexico and where does that leave all of us??

Anonymous said...

I work for a parts supplier also.We took cuts in our last contract,no wage cuts though.Then they took most of our jobs to Mexico,then built another plant in mexico.To top it off the ceo gets a couple million dollar raise.Ask some of these CEO's to take a pay cut and see what kind of response you get.This whole country needs to strike at once.Bet the government would start to sweat then.

Anonymous said...

I work for an AAM / GM supplier and we've pretty much ground to a halt because of the strike. As of this week we have about 6 people per shift in the plant. I visited the Buffalo AAM plant a few years back and I was sickened by the work ethic there. There was a very strong "that's not my job" attitude amongst the workers. For example, we stood around for about an hour waiting for someone to lift down a pallet with a forklift for us because everyone said "sorry, that's not my job". When the worker who's job it was finally arrived (along with his "air traffic control" man on the ground we realized how pathetic the situation was there.
Now don't get me wrong, I agree that heavy wage cuts are hard to swallow, mine was just cut too, and I support the fact that you're trying to preserve some of the standard of living you've grown accustomed to, but the fact of the matter is that if you expect decent wages you should be prepared to work for it. From my personal experience I believe the AAM workers in Buffalo were only doing $12 per hour worth of work...if that. My point here is life is hard, get over it. You can't expect to have everything served to you on a silver platter. On Monday when you head back to the picket lines maybe you could think about this: While you're all out whining about not getting paid enough, there are thousands of other people who work hard for thier money but are now getting paid nothing thanks to you.

Anonymous said...

Wow, look at the anonymous idiots posting negative feedback. It is too true that they don't have a clue what they are talking about. Let me educate you a little bit.

You are right to say that we don't supposedly deserve the wage we get. I will agree that there isn't a single job in our plant, GM Fort Wayne Assembly Truck Plant, that deserves to be paid at our wage. But, when you think of the multi-million dollar payouts that our executives get year after year, every job is worth that and more.

And, as for the idiot that is a skilled trade worker, I have a bachelors degree in finance and there are hundreds of others working at my plant alone who have degrees also. Until the balance of pay between management and the workers who support their jobs is more even, I will continue to fight for my job.

As for the Toyota comment. I have friends that work in the plant in Indiana and, guess what, working conditions suck and their jobs are threatened every day by supervisors. So, one final note. To all of you who think we are cry babies. Stop being jealous and try to make your life better by supporting legislation that brings American jobs back to America. If we brought back alot of the jobs that went oversees, everyone could make a good wage. Economics 101!!!!

Anonymous said...

My husband works for a Tier 1 OEM supplier in the automotive industry and their hours just got cut due to the strike. The work environment at his job is dirty, hot, nasty and dangerous, the jobs are physically demanding, I know, I used to work there too. The starting pay is $10 with a top out of $15.50. Once you reach top out, you don't get any raises, only an annual bonus (which ranges between 1.5-3% of the annual wages).
If AAM workers aren't willing to take a paycut and they truely believe they are worth $28+ an hour with all the perks that come with being a UAW member, then I suggest you take the buyout and find yourself a job that will pay the wages you're looking for/are used to. Good luck!!!
There are many other unemployed/laid off workers that will be happy to take the job for $14 an hour.
My husband grew up as a GM brat, his dad worked for GM for 20 years and neither of them has any use for UAW, even when his dad was a member.
As for corporate greed, if you don't want to be a corporate slave, you should put yourself in a position where you have complete control of your destiny.

Anonymous said...

"There are many other unemployed/laid off workers that will be happy to take the job for $14 an hour."

There are also plenty of people willing to take their jobs for $12 an hour. And $10. And $8. Maybe eventually we can reinstate slavery. All to insure American corporations post record profits. Of course, they would have no profits, would they?! Afterall, as Henry Ford pointed out, if an employee can't afford the product he is making, the company can't expect to remain in business.

I am not a member of the UAW (or any other union) but I do support the position unions have taken toward corporate greed. I despise big business bullying ALL OF US by saying they will move to Mexico if the working American refuses to accept drastic paycuts. I say go to Mexico. They will work for cheaper. Of course, they can't afford your product either. And don't look to the American worker to buy your product--we'll be unemployed, scraping by in our new third-world nation.

The bottom-line is this: a company's mismanagement of funds (or flat out greed) is not the fault of the working man. If American Axle was a struggling company, I may be more understanding of their postion. However, in my eyes, they are a very lucrative company. I don't forsee any cuts by AA management (lower costs of their product which is ultimately passed on to the consumer-lower salaries by members of upper management, etc.).

Stick to your guns. Many people will question anothers principles, as they sell themselves to corporate greed.


Anonymous said...


I am sick and tired of the CRAP that Dick Dauch and American Axle is trying to dish to its employees and their families.
I can’t believe that this man has the nerve to sit there and offer insulting wages with insulting “buy downs” and “buy outs”. He should be ashamed of what he is putting our 3600+ families through. Let’s not forget the other hundreds of thousands families that are being affected by this strike too. Not only in our country; but world wide.

He seems to think that his “buy downs” and “buy outs” will be “cushy and comfy” for his employees. These figures must be enough to replace the 14 years my husband has in at your company, the fact that we have to completely start over somewhere else – without the same pay – and allow our families to keep our houses. In my opinion, this man will never offer enough for the damage that has already been done and the wrath we are about to endure.

He smugly accepts a huge salary and bonuses while he threatens to close our plants because we aren’t making a profit large enough. However, he fails to announce to the world that these 5 plants fund the off shore plants and the off shore plants rake in the profits. How do you expect my husband and his co-workers to produce enough to finance all of these operations? Meanwhile, he is taking machines out of my husband’s plant and sending them to non-union plants. It’s a disgrace! AMERICAN Axle …yeah, real American.

I resent the fact that he is turning our lives upside down. I resent the fact we have to start over. I resent the fact we may have to TRY and sell our home and my kids may have to leave their school and the friends they know. Above all, I resent the fact that this is all because of 1 company’s greed!

I hope the whole Dauch family and members of the board can sleep well at night with their million dollar salaries; knowing their jobs and salaries are safe. While we are worrying and wondering how we are going to repair this financial and emotional mess that he has thrown us into. We can only hope that he acquires a conscience before it’s not too late!

Jolyna - A wife of AAM employee

Anonymous said...

As an automotive supplier, our company is also affected by the strike. I have another point of view that all posting here should consider. The next time you visit the local retail store, turn over the merchandise you are considering buying. If it says China, Mexico, Vietnam, Malaysia and any of the other low cost countries, put it back on the shelf. I have been doing this for about a year now, and it is hard to find things made in the US. You really want to bring good jobs back to the US, change your buying habits and force the retailers to buy american. Once enough people stop buying the junk from overseas, then the impact will begin to be felt and jobs will start coming back.
Also as an automotive supplier, we have to compete against the Purchasing tactics of the OEM's to buy everything they can from low cost countries.
If we really want to make a difference, don't buy anything that is not made in the US. Easy to say, not so easy to do. But if enough of us make a stand on this point, it will change the tide over the long term and provide the future our children deserve.

Anonymous said...

For all the people that think these people are overpayed look at the company profits their employers make. Billions of dollars a year or hundreds of millions in a bad year. Operating cost for workers are about 15-20 percent of total opereration costs. These people dont get payed for the work they do but for the time they put in. 9-5 monday to friday day workers have no clue at the sacrifices these workers make to supply America with what it needs. These workers work rotating shifts , nites , weekends, holidays in mind numbing environments. Shift work kills marriages lowers life expectency and the concreate floors kill backs and knees. What is that worth in wages. People that work 9--5 in a office or a job where they sweat only if the air conditioning is broke have no businness saying others are over payed. If factory work was 9-5 monday to friday with weekend and holidays off most of those jobs would be only worth 10-15 a hour,but when companys are making billions off you back and you working at 3am when the rest of America sleeps safe in their beds ,your worth you wage. When did America turn thier backs on the the class of people that built your nation. If they dont want to pay what your worth take the jobs else where, don't become a slave ,they will realize when no one has money to buy what they are making things will change.How many people in these third world contries are buying their products. We buy the stuff we need the money to make the economy work. Stand tall, stand firm, you are worth you wages America thanks you. I have a group on face book called Bring back the 200 dollar toaster bring back the jobs take a look and support American and Canadian manufaturing jobs. My name is Joe and I'm a Canadian factory worker.

Anonymous said...

I have been following this strike from Australia over the last 10 weeks

Workers have power, but they can not leave it the hands of a Union, that like all unions, is on the company payroll. Everyone is aware of the billions the Unions got their greedy hands for selling out workers at the big three last year.

Take this strike out of the hands of the Unions and put it in the safest hands possible--your own. Organize your own strike committees and call for support from all workers who are faced by the same attacks on their living standards as you.

You have come such a long way, ten weeks, don't waste now. Have courage, and do what you know is right, support will come from places you least expect.


Anonymous said...

JOE638NYC, Mr. Zhao of Wonder Auto calculates that it costs him $4 million to set up an assembly line here in Jinzhou with mostly manual labor, employing 20 workers.

The combined wages of 20 workers here come to only $40,000 a year at the current exchange rate of 7.65 yuan to the dollar. That is in the range of annual base pay for one unionized auto parts worker in the United States and comparable to two nonunion American auto parts workers. Mr. Zhao recently explored and rejected the idea of opening a factory in the United States, after calculating that it would cost $10 million to set up a heavily automated line that would employ three workers.


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