Saturday, December 29, 2007

Kokomo, Indiana S.O.S.

Kokomo Soldiers of Solidarity Meeting - June 9, 2006

Kokomo Soldiers of Solidarity Charter

Kokomo Soldiers of Solidarity (Formerly The Delphi Workers' Committee) consists of rank-n-file members, elected officials and appointed members of Local 292, Local 685 and Local 1166 of the United Auto Workers Union. The committee exists solely to build progressive change in our local unions.

The working class and the employing class have nothing in common. There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are found among millions of the working people and the few, who make up the employing class, have all the good things of life.

We work as an independent collective of concerned members from the inside our local unions. Our objective is to protect and educate our co-workers on the shop floor. We strive to protect, empower and educate the entire membership of our locals. We believe that the empowering of the rank-n-file membership is the only solution to build a stronger union. From the bottom up we must reform the entire UAW.

Kokomo Soldiers of Solidarity works to notify the membership of our locals when elected or appointed local and international union officials are unethical or acting in a manner contrary to the interests of the membership.

Kokomo Soldiers of Solidarity works to notify the membership of our locals of all management activities that are harmful to our unions.

We pride ourselves in the mission of building a strong workplace that fosters true union democracy, solidarity and nurtures new ideas from every member. This mission allows everyone to stay on top of what management and local union officials are doing by building communication networks in our departments.

We regularly hold meetings in Kokomo with discussions on many issues ranging from general communication, factory news, tactics and how we can build more solidarity on the shop floor. Since 2005 we have typically met once every few weeks to discuss these issues and the issues of the entire auto industry.

We have many other rank-n-file, elected, retired and even international union members from around the country who often attend and help our efforts. If you or your co-workers support the SOS Program below and you are interested in joining us and attending our meetings to help build solidarity and educated other members on the shop floor you can e-mail us at webmaster.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Fighting in New Orleans over public housing and the future

Residents of New Orleans are trying to keep the government from tearing down public housing. Many poor and working people in NO are faced with rising rents and homelessness. Since Hurricane Katrina, the government has failed to bring people back to the city. Those who have tried to come back are barred from their old places, while the government and city council fail to open up new affordable homes and apts. Instead, Bourbon Street and the bar districts are being renovated and opened for tourists and the rich while everyday people are left out cold.

For those of us in Michigan and Detroit we see a similar crisis where city and State government build up small districts with casinos, restaurants and bars, but the mass of the citizens and poor and working classes see little benefit of this development.

Today, demonstrations of fed up NO residents were attacked by police. People wanted a moratorium on the planned demolition of public housing, instead they got abuse in the form of arrests, pepper spray, and being taserd.

Below are video's of the events. the first is a video giving background on the situation, the second is a weblink to a local NO TV station that shows the protests and subsequent attacks.

Check here for the news station videos

Monday, December 10, 2007

'07 UAW contracts: a continuing downward spiral for working people

Rank n' File organizer and agitator, Greg Shotwell, speaks with Jerry Mead-Lucero of Labor Express Radio about the 2007 contracts between the UAW, GM, Ford and Chrysler.

Greg Shotwell is a GM worker, a member of UAW Local 1753, and a member of the organization, Soldiers of Solidarity (SOS), the independent auto workers movement that boiled to the surface 3 years ago in the face of cuts at Delphi auto parts plants across the Midwest.

Shotwell talks about the the UAW contracts being a "boondagle" for workers and that UAW talk of job security is a myth when 11 plants have been slated to close - some announced just days after the contracts were ratified. He points to increased competition between plants workers over production rather than solidarity amongst the ranks based on unionism, and sees the poor turnout for the contract votes as cynicism with business union politics.

listen to interview here.