Listen: Auto workers strike against General Motors for better pay and benefits
"The United auto workers. striking against General Motors did you see that common Jim Ryan is R. A. B. C. news correspondent he joins us this morning Jim was I just not paying attention this this deadline was looming and the auto workers decided to pull the trigger. yeah well I think it was fairly quiet at least out of the public realm anything care insiders union halls and talk about this for some time the union's been saving up reserves to ensure that it could pay its members while they're on strike something like two hundred fifty dollars a week so yeah I mean it publicly yeah things seem to be moving fairly smoothly and I think a lot of folks were caught off guard went over the weekend the contract expired and the contract talks seem to be going no where John. I've always heard that the auto workers have a pretty good deal with with General Motors and with other American manufacturers now I mean that's subjective of course what are the demands now what what what are they looking for that they either didn't have under the previous contractor that they want they want to have in this new version which presumably will happen. yeah he falls under the broad category of job security wages are one thing and the health benefits or another but they're also complaining at they are concerned about the the use of outside workers and subcontractors for some of the jobs that are normally done by GM workers themselves so that I think that's kind of the broad demand from the from the UAW the the companies sell that says that it's presented a strong offer improving wages benefits and growing US jobs this comes though about a year though after GM announced it was closing five plants that laying off something like fifteen percent of its salaried work force so that both sides or or you know they they they're they're trying to talk about for the future of the company is yet a little leery about where it is right now that both sides are really interested in making sure this is a fairly short strike dot the I saw I saw the story about the the plants closing and that that was one of the demands they have what what can General Motors do it their Idoling the plant by midday ball offering to move these employees are they offering to bring other elements of the production line to those plants. and I don't think they're gonna do that but the generally what they have done in the past is when they announced that they're having to either shut down a plane completely or two for lower it for some time those workers are not allowed to move within the company a lot of folks moved up from one plant to another and a lot of lot of people ended up here in Texas from Michigan when those plans were being closed in the late eighties early nineties and and that continues so people do move around within the company and I think that's been the offer of those five plants that were shattered permanently how about other American automakers or are they on a time table with this could happen to them as well. yep the denture late on that these talks are happening all the time union negotiators sitting down with their company so sure I think there's that there's a possibility that that at four there is a is something looming in the future we'll see what happens with this one I think a lot of them to read into what happens with the number one company GM before deciding this strategy but some of the smaller companies and I guess GM is motivated to actually deal with these folks and get this settled how much are they losing every day or every week. three hundred million dollars potentially is lost they're the last long term strike was excellent Michigan in nineteen ninety eight and then over twenty years that that one because the company two billion dollars so yeah it's it's in their best interest to try to see that this is settled fairly quickly and you know the the union recognizes that as well because that two hundred fifty Bucks a week you know each union member isn't to say that normally they make that in in a day yeah that's not that's not gonna go very far Hey what are the what did the union saying about the healthcare issue because you know I've again I've always heard that if you work for a manufacturer of car manufacturer your health care is like the premium healthcare compared to the rest of us I mean they pay what less than a hundred dollars a month if if what I have read is true for their healthcare and yet a lot of the union people were some of the main advocates for obamacare which I think is because some tension in the union world. well what I think they're trying to hold on to their health care plans that they have now I think the concern isn't that they aren't going to get a better plan in the future but that they might lose what they have now yeah and man is so I think that's the the main concern out there the UAW is that they just want to insure that they have the same bill or at least similar health care in the future that they have right now well I can't blame them for that if if I I don't care like that that be fantastic Jim Ryan our ABC news correspondent appreciate the update"