SmooveB asked in Politics & GovernmentPolitics · 1 decade ago

Should the UAW agree to bring their salaries in line with workers in Japanese auto plants in America?

In exchange for bailout money? Congress voted to deny the money after UAW refused to agree to salary cuts. Current annual salary and beneifts per UAW worker is orund $70 per hour or just under $150,000 per year, when the average US HOUSEHOLD income is $50,233.00.

11 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    First, I want to note that you are comparing apples and oranges.

    The average household income does not include healthcare benefits, retirement benefits, etc. When you look at almost anyone's salary, the amount the company really pays per hour once you include salary, benefits, and everything is about twice what their actual salary is.

    So if the person is making say $60,000 a year, the company is really shelling out about $120,000 for that individual. Or if you do it in terms of hourly wage, if the person makes $25 per hour, the company is really paying about $50 an hour to keep them.

    So that $150,000 is nowhere near what their annual income is.

    I think that when your company is on the verge of collapsing, you don't say that you won't take a pay cut in order to keep the company alive. I think Congress asking that the UAW brings its pay in line with the Japanese companies is a very acceptable offer given the current situation.

    I think Ron Gettelfinger is somewhat playing Russian Roulette with half of the gun chambers loaded by stating that they won't take a pay cut. If Congress doesn't do the bailout, then the life of GM and Chrysler basically rely on President Bush. Bush hasn't been kind to the automakers in the past and has said that if they couldn't get competitive that maybe they should be allowed to go out of business.

    I think Gettelfinger is betting that he has nothing to lose by refusing to take pay cuts. If Chrysler and GM go bankrupt they will probably lose pay in the court system through the court bankruptcy process. So this is his one chance to keep the pay at current levels. The only thing is that there is no guarantee that Chrysler or GM will not go out of business permanently if they are allowed to go bankrupt.

    I think he is being way too risky. He's risking thousands of union jobs, white collar jobs, small supplier company jobs, and jobs all around the country because him and the UAW workers are pay greedy.

    What could happen is exactly what happened at a Delphi plant in Indiana. The workers were making about $28 to $29 per hour. After the company went through bankruptcy they had to cut their pay back to $14 an hour. Their pay was basically cut in half!

    I think the Union is getting way too greedy, especially when the life of the companies that provide their jobs are at stake along with thousands of other jobs that aren't union or that supply their companies with parts. It would be a catastrophe of horrific proportions if those companies were to go under and all over a small drop in pay.

    Another thing that makes me sick about it is that many of these company's engineers are making less than what the shop floor labor workers are making. Does it make sense that many of the engineers with college degrees are making less than the shop floor workers? To me it doesn't. What kind of incentive is that for an engineer to want to stay when all the people he/she works around that don't have college degrees make more than he/she does?

  • 1 decade ago

    The UAW doesn't actually care about the workers, it cares about the slice they get from that $70 per hour FTE cost. The major deal breaker was the layoff pay thing. The UAW needs to move on this one.

  • Noah H
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    If so, shouldn't American workers have Universal Health Insurance and retirement as they have in Japan? Or, shouldn't the US have the stones to slap on an import tax to even out the differences in salary? It seems that some people want the American auto worker to get paid at such a low rate that they would never be able to buy the cars they make, or see a doctor or retire. Just work for peanuts, get sick and die like our brothers and sisters in some of these 3rd world countries....sacrificed on the altar of big profits and 'Everyday Low Prices'. Excuse me, but that sucks!

  • 1 decade ago

    If Congress and Senate really cared about "Main Street" they could vote to "roll back" one or two of the pay raises they have given themselves. I suggested that by email to my Representatives before they voted (against my wishes) for the bank bail out. I have promised not to re-elect them in the future.

    How much "per hour" do you think they make? And they are free to give themselves raises anytime. No point in a President veto-you could be sure they would over ride it.

    The potential loss of jobs is staggering:

    Detroit's carmakers employ nearly a quarter-million workers, and more than 730,000 others produce materials and parts for cars. If one of the automakers declared bankruptcy, some estimate as many as 3 million U.S. jobs could be lost next year.

    Many congressional Republicans and some economists said the companies would be best to pursue a prearranged bankruptcy that would allow them to restructure quickly. But most Democrats and the carmakers rejected that, arguing it would quickly lead to liquidation because consumers would never buy cars from a bankrupt auto company.

    Source(s): White House considers help for car makers - Yahoo! News
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  • 1 decade ago

    What are your stats based on?

    GM states that the average UAW laborer makes $29.78 per hour, while Toyota says it pays about $30 per hour.

    The difference in total costs is in benefits since the Japanese auto plants have far fewer retirees and its pension and health care benefits are much less. Should GM adversely affect its retirees and reduce health benefits?

    In any case, driving US workers' wages even lower is not good for the overall economy.

  • Evie
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I think they should.

    The unions are the reason this is happening and why businesses are moving overseas.

    They should also make sure that these companies STOP the pay for employees at factories that have closed. They still get full pay and benefits. They need to relocate and find another job if one is no available in their area, instead of leeching off the company in trouble.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Sure..then maybe the rest of America can bring their salaries in line with their Chinese counter-parts. I'd love to be paid 20 cents a day

  • khan
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    The salaries are in line with other auto companies. (30 dollars an hour)

    The tipping point comes to benefits for retired workers. Thanks to contract negotiation, Ford is scheduled to be within 4 dollars of Toyota's hourly costs by 2010... I really don't know what more you want. These companies just have to survive, they are already restructuring.


    The poster above me has no concept of priorities. 3 Million jobs depend on the USA's Big 3.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    UAW thinks they deserve more than people in Mobile, AL. ... descendants of slaves.

    But, yes, they should pay same wage as Toyota in the US.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    No, below the foreign workers salaries. Then build a better product.

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