Supporting striking workers: Why it matters

Posted Oct. 2, 2019 by

photo above: OCSEA supports UAW-GM union members on the picket line in Toledo.

Union members, like OCSEA bargaining unit employees, as well as workers across Ohio are supporting striking United Auto Workers (UAW) union members because they know the strike is a their way of drawing a hard line in the sand.

Striking UAW-GM workers are drawing a line in the sand on cutbacks to health care and wages, and, in the process, drawing the attention of the world to the causes of workers. They’re also shining a red hot light on how cuts like these don’t just affect GM employees, but whole communities of people, entire states and the nation as a whole. Look at Lordstown.

The town’s largest employer—GM--closed up and left 3,000 families without jobs or scrambling to relocate and re-employ. That doesn’t affect just those families. It impacts area schools, the mom and pop stores, other manufacturers in the area, the colleges, the housing market, the tax base, government employees. Eventually, everything and everyone in Lordstown will be touched by it.

The UAW strike, the largest private sector strike in a decade, comes on the heels of massive strikes beginning in 2018 with teachers in West Virginia, Oklahoma and Arizona and continuing in 2019 with grocery store workers, hotel employees, tech workers and graduate students. What they share, is that they’re fed up. They’re fed up with being treated like second class citizens. They’re fed up with the offshoring and privatization of their jobs. They’re fed up with record profits not being shared with workers. They’re fed up with their jobs and services in the public sector not being properly funded. They’ve had enough!

And while these strikes are bringing the problem of inequality front and center in our political discussions, more importantly they’re also signaling a renewed solidarity among all workers: You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us!

To join a picket line in solidarity with the UAW-GM workers and learn more about the power of strikes for ALL workers, go HERE.