Workers speak out after learning Flint Delphi East will close - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Workers speak out after learning Flint Delphi East will close

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  • Delphi to close Flint East Facility

    Delphi to close Flint East Facility

    Wednesday, February 6 2013 11:21 AM EST2013-02-06 16:21:22 GMT
    (02/05/13) - Delphi will close it's Flint East Facility in November 2013. Workers were notified about the closure Tuesday afternoon. Under a special agreement, GM provides the workers and Delphi supervises
    General Motors says production at the Delphi Flint East plant will stop by the end of the year. This is a plant that's operated by Delphi, but with unionized GM workers.

(02/06/13) - One day after finding out production will end this fall, workers at Delphi Flint East are trying to figure out their future. Some say they're not quite sure what's next for them.

General Motors and Delphi say production at Flint's Delphi East will end in November.

Art Reyes, the president of Local 651 - which represents the nearly 300 workers - says he plans to fight for his members.

Delphi says the work there was continued past an agreement that was reached in 2007. The parts supplier had a deal with GM to use the automaker's Flint-area work force through 2011.

The plant is operated by Delphi, but with unionized GM employees. Only 50 workers have recall rights with GM, which means they can move into open jobs at other plants.

Many have no idea how they're going to bounce back from this.

"I'm a single parent and I'm taking care of three kids, grown daughter who has some medical issues. We can't afford where we live right now. We can barely afford to get by right now, but when it comes time for my turn to walk out the door, I can't pay the rent," said Amy Larsen, who has worked for the plant for the past seven years. "I've been in tears for a couple of days. It's very stressful when you're the breadwinner and you don't know if you'll be able to provide a home. We were hoping to get a mortgage this year and if we're out of work, that's not going to happen."

Earline Young, a member of UAW Local 651, has been with the company for 18 years. Like many of her colleagues, she's not sure what's next.

"We've been working for this company, we should have never been treated the way they are treating us, this is a disgrace, I just don't understand what's going on and it's not right. I feel we're being discriminated against," she said.

"We have had meetings for the last two years asking specific questions about our work coming and as far as how long will we be able to work, where will we go when our work ends, but we were told we had a job until 2015 at our site," said Shante Marshall-Brown, who worked there for almost seven years.

Reyes says the international union, the regional office and the local union are bound and determined to let their voices be heard.

"I just want to make sure that our members do not lose hope, that the community does not lose hope. This is not the final word. Despair is not something that we should do. We want them to continue going to work, continue to do your job because that helps bolster our case until we continue to fight with these guys, and a fight is now coming," he said.

We're told that a special meeting will be held at UAW Local 651 on Sunday.

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