Newscoma Has Moved
Friday, September 08, 2006
  Goodyear and Union Continue Negotiations Unionized Goodyear employees in northwest Tennessee are having a rough time. Three years ago, they voted to ratify an agreement where they lost quite a bit of their pension. They say they agreed to this because Goodyear was financially on the edge at that period of time. This year, according to union reps, the tire company wants to cut benefits including major cuts for retirees. And northwest Tennessee will be impacted one way or the other regardless of what happens. The dilemma is simple, take a 20 percent reduction in salary as well as benefit reduction or keep playing hardball with Goodyear's corporate offices. On top of this, Goodyear announced yesterday they are selling a portion of their tire cord operations to a company from South Korea called Hyosung Corp. in a multi-year agreement that will affect plants in the United States as well as Luxemborg and Brazil. The thing is, if employees accept the agreement, which although it hasn't been reported on let's say to the extent that Suri Cruise's debut in Vanity Fair has (blech), the implications of the negotiations is quite devastating for northwest Tennessee. If they close the plant, the area will go into an economic depression of astronomical proportions. The future for Union City and the surrounding ares is uncertain. I have written this before, but in Dresden alone, the largest employer is the grocery store. It used to be World Color, which employed a ton of people. In Martin, the Hubble plant was lost but at least they have the University and MTD (which is on lay-off at the moment until next month.) In Union City, it comes down to if Goodyear is lost, the area affectively suffers. Corporate is, according to some of the Goodyear employees, meeting with local chambers in all rural communites that have Goodyear plants trying to beef up attention that without them, communities will dry up. Which is true. However, Goodyear will affectively be taking away things from their workers and former workers they have earned. If corporate wants to save money, there are other ways to be cost effective. We live in very economically depressed times. We deal with it daily at the newspaper. In the last six years since our last census, our population has dropped more than 3000 people. That number will drastically drop if we lost Goodyear. But Goodyear shouldn't be holding our community and its employees hostage either. This is not good, campers. Not good at all. 
Comments:
Okay, if you're Goodyear, what do you do? You can't slash "the big shots" because, in truth, their salary really makes up very little percentagewise compared to thousands of people making union wages.

What would be interesting would be to compare the average Goodyear salary with that of other factory workers in say Milan, Jackson, Alamo, or some place similar. How do they compare?

I have a friend at Goodyear who started out at 18 years of age making $20+/hour simply driving a forklift. That's about $41,600 a year WITHOUT overtime. If he can average 10 hours a week overtime, that's $57,200 a year for non or semi-skilled labor. And there are probably plenty of people making more.

Can we, as the MARKET, bear purchasing products that are made by Production workers making more money that teachers, accountants, and engineers? Most likely not.

NO OFFENSE TO THE PEOPLE MAKING THE MONEY! Hey, who can blame them? One of my friends dropped out of Engineer College to take a job there. He made enough in 2 or 3 years to pay for the rest of his school. Oddly enough, he DID finish it up, but he REALLY had to convince himself it was the right thing to do.
 
This Sucks for everyone involved...My dad has busted butt for this company and now his pay, benefits, healthcare are all being threatened to be cut...and some 40-60%...This company is making plenty of money...and there's no reason the people working there shouldn't make what they are making and more.

They work 6 days a week on concrete floors in no air conditioning...and they get injured all the time because they do physical labor...hernias, broken and mangled limbs, etc...it's dangerous and bad on the health...so I'm sorry, but just because society is starting this stupid label of college educated people are better than laborers is ridiculous...people should get paid on the stress level, the labor...the time put in...and these jobs are hard...I've worked in a warehouse and it was harder than any office job I have...

These people are getting the shaft while the CEO's aren't even getting touched...talk about where the cuts should be...those making 4-5 million a year or even 300-500 thousand a year...maybe they should have their pay cut...but they get to play golf...and socialize...and they have to pay for the overpriced suits with the fancy labels...

Anyway, the cost of living was rated to 15.00 an hour for the United States by a government who just gave themselves a raise to 160,000 a year...hmmm....something is a little f'd up here when minimum wage is so dang low...factory workers should make way about 15.00 and no where near minimum...
 
correction in my speediness of typing (which I made several typos...). Factory workers should make way above 15.00 an hour...

and in the second paragraph...last line..."any office job I have ever had..." was what I meant to say.

these blogs can be brutal on typos...so wanted to make those corrections...
 
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