UAW members clash with delivery truck drivers at GM facilities during strike

SWARTZ CREEK (WJRT) (09/18/19) - On day three of the strike, truck drivers trying to make deliveries at General Motors plants have reported angry confrontations with UAW members.

At the GM Customer Care and After Sales plant in Swartz Creek, United Auto Workers members are striking for a better contract. At the same place, delivery truck drivers are crossing the picket line to deliver parts.

But they are meeting some resistance.

"We're asking and hoping that everyone supports us. When you see trucks that's crossing the line, they have to be non-union. There would not be a union company or truck service that's crossing this picket line," said Gary Greene, who has worked at GM for nearly 30 years.

Greene continues to hire more UAW members and fight for better wages.

"Over the years, my family has been able to live comfortable with the UAW and what they've negotiated in the past. The UAW leadership today is going to continue that," Greene said.

He says one or two trucks crossing the line won't cover the losses GM is facing without their UAW workers.

"This is just what we call a little piece of the pie when a truck comes in here versus 20 or 30 trucks coming in here per hour every day. We just witnessed two trucks coming in here and that's it. They're going to come in and we're going to continue to do what we do peacefully and lawfully," Greene said.

According to Swartz Creek ordinances, picketers cannot obstruct or interfere with entrance to or egress from any place of employment. An offender could face a misdemeanor charge and be placed under arrest.

One GM employee said that's not going to discourage him.

"We keep our heads up high, be safe and still fight for the fight," said six-year veteran GM worker Damon Richardson. "We don't want none of our union brothers and sisters getting hurt, ran over or trampled over in the process. Right now, I know everyone knows, we don't have health care, so when you're out here doing that, you have to keep that in your mind as well."

Workers on strike outside a General Motors facility in Tennessee were arrested after a confrontation with a truck driver, according to the Associated Press.

A United Auto Workers official says about seven to nine union picketers were arrested for blocking a roadway at a General Motors plant in Tennessee.

Local UAW Chairman Mike Herron said the arrests came Wednesday at the Spring Hill plant after authorities asked the protesters multiple times to get out of the road. Herron said he believes the protesters were afraid trucks might get into the plant.

Herron said at a news conference that police and the sheriff's department have done a fantastic job and have been supportive during the ongoing strike.

He said arrests take the union off its message.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



 
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