Support the Indianapolis GM workers!
22 September 2010
The World Socialist Web Site calls on workers to send letters of solidarity and support to the Indianapolis GM Stamping Rank-and-file Committee. Workers at the factory recently formed the committee to lead a fight against the 50 percent wage cut being demanded by the United Auto Workers on behalf of General Motors and corporate raider JD Norman.
A year after the Obama administration used the bankruptcy of GM and Chrysler to initiate a campaign of brutal wage cutting throughout the economy, workers in Indianapolis are defying the UAW and taking a stand to defend their living standards.
Rank-and-file workers formed the committee after the UAW repeatedly defied their votes against the wage cut. After years of concessions and collaboration with the corporations these workers concluded that the UAW was against them and a new organization was needed. Countering the efforts to divide and weaken workers at the plant, the committee is fighting to unite every section of workers—young and old, full time and temporary—in a common struggle against the wage cut and to stop the closing of the plant.
The formation of the committee is a milestone in the coming counter-offensive of the working class against the efforts of big business and its political parties to impose conditions of poverty and exploitation not seen since the Great Depression.
This drive for wage cuts in Indianapolis is part of a worldwide offensive against auto workers. Earlier this year, GM’s subsidiary Opel announced the closing of its plant in Antwerp, Belgium, destroying 2,600 jobs. Throughout Europe GM and other car companies are demanding job cuts and a rollback in the living standards and working conditions of auto workers. Like their counter-parts in the US, the union officials in Europe and throughout the world have collaborated in the efforts of governments to make the working class pay for the global economic crisis.
The latest statement of the GM Stamping Rank-and-File Committee boldly declares, “It is time for us to fight back. For too long, the companies have been able to get away with anything they want. For too long we have given back. For too long we have allowed ourselves to be duped by the UAW into accepting the demands of the corporate executives and Wall Street investors. Workers throughout the country are watching us, and we have to lead by example!”
A statement issued last week by the committee announced that “the next generation of auto workers has the right not to live in poverty and we will protect that right. No amount of threats will stop us.”
In defiance of the economic nationalism peddled by the UAW, the committee is appealing for support from auto workers—and all workers—throughout the world. Letters have already come from several US states, as well as from Japan and Sri Lanka. We ask our readers to send letters of support and encouragement to the rank-and-file committee to strengthen their fight and demonstrate the support they have from workers in every country.
Please send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org and send copies to the World Socialist Web Site.