Nov 5, 2007
Shortly after the GM contract with the UAW was pushed through, GM’s chief executive had a conference call with Wall Street bankers and analysts.
GM bragged that over the next four years the company could push 56,000, or 75%, of its current UAW workers into retirement and that most of them could be replaced by much lower paid workers – so-called “non-core” workers, earning total wages and benefits of $25.65 an hour, compared to the $78.21 GM claims for labor costs now.
GM actually took $52.56 from the workers with this contract!
GM bragged that it had permanently dumped its retiree healthcare expenses onto the union.
This new retirees’ VEBA fund is loaded with stock and notes – worthless pieces of paper!
Past UAW president Doug Fraser himself admitted, “God help us if we get into a depression or recession and the value of the fund plummets and the UAW is sitting there with this huge liability.”
No wonder Wall Street was celebrating. But auto workers may yet have their revenge. GM workers can tear up a contract sold with false promises like one more worthless piece of paper.