Emergency online meeting: Stop the mass layoffs in the auto industry!

The Autoworkers Rank-and-File Committee Network—part of the International Workers Alliance of Rank-and-File Committees (IWA-RFC)—and the World Socialist Web Site are holding an emergency online meeting this Saturday, January 20, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern / 12:00 p.m. Central to discuss how to organize to stop the mass layoffs in the auto industry. Register here.

On Friday, Stellantis (parent company of Chrysler and Jeep) suddenly fired over 500 temporary workers, also known as “supplemental employees,” in Michigan and Indiana. According to the United Auto Workers, the cuts are just beginning, with 1,600 more supplemental workers expected to be terminated in the coming months.

The firing of temps comes on top of thousands of other layoffs Stellantis has announced at Toledo Jeep and the Detroit Mack Assembly plant in recent weeks. Ford and General Motors have similarly announced impending mass job cuts or have already begun them.

This major escalation of the assault on workers’ jobs comes in the wake of the 2023 UAW-Big Three contracts, universally and falsely hailed as “historic” by UAW President Shawn Fain and the corporate media. The contracts were, in fact, rammed through by the UAW bureaucracy following a fraudulent series of “stand up strikes,” which kept the vast majority of workers on the job.

As the giant auto corporations engage in a ferocious competition to dominate the electric vehicle markets, they are enacting a global restructuring of their operations, savagely attacking jobs, cutting labor costs and increasing the exploitation of workers. In every country, the pro-corporate union apparatuses are collaborating with the companies in destroying jobs and preparing to close plants.

Hundreds of thousands of autoworkers’ jobs internationally are in the crosshairs, from Stellantis workers in Italy, to Bosch and VW workers in Germany, to Skoda workers in the Czech Republic, along with countless more auto parts workers. Moreover, layoffs are mounting across industries and work sectors, from UPS and logistics workers to tech workers at Google and other firms.

The global jobs bloodbath must be stopped, but it is up to rank-and-file workers to organize this fight!

In a statement Wednesday, the International Workers Alliance of Rank-and-File Committees—a global network of militant workers organizations—called for an international struggle against the job cuts, urging workers to form rank-and-file committees in order to coordinate common action and prepare strike activity.

In opposition to the profit-driven attacks on workers’ livelihoods, the IWA-RFC is calling for:

  • End all job cuts immediately, and reinstate all those already affected!
  • Reduce the length of the workday, with an increase in pay, to account for the fewer hours needed to produce EVs and make up for decades of stagnant wages!
  • Unite across borders to fight the global jobs massacre!
  • Place the auto industry under social ownership and democratic workers’ control!

We urge all auto and auto parts workers to attend this critically important discussion, share the registration page on social media, and invite their friends and coworkers.