Sunday, 14 December 2008

There is Power in a Union!


Every now and then a right-wing commentator suggests that the pre-eminent days of organised labour are long gone.

We know different as there are many examples of workers' combining to resistthe fall-out of capital to supply the right wing media with a picture of the 'real world' on a regular basis - sadly we are not a 'good' story'.

And so to members of Local 1110 of the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (pictured) employed by Republic Windows and Doors, Chicago, USA.

Read the story at:

These workers staged a classic sit-in based on acute intelligence and (if you read the NYT story) a strong determination (obviously) to save their jobs.

As reported by the New York Times:

The reverberations of the workers’ victory are likely to be felt for months as plants continue to close. Bob Bruno, director of the labor studies program at the University of Illinois at Chicago, predicted organized labor would be emboldened by the workers’ success. “If you combine some palpable street anger with organizational resources in a changing political mood,” he said, “you can begin to see more of these sort of riskier, militant adventures, and they’re more likely to succeed.”

Naturally all readers of this blog wish our sisters and brothers in the US good luck with their campaign.

My request now is somewhat different from all other posts.

Please send a message of solidarity to those affected by the URMRA campaign (

Please post any replies/comments you receive.




Del Ansar said...

Thanks for the the link,

You are right - better to express solidarity - not just chatter on the blogs - useless! - how does this help?

You have provided a good link though.


Ian Manborde said...

Thanks Del - Straight to the point as ever - Ian

TGWU Rep said...

Interesting item this.

Puts me in mind of the tactics of the French CGTU union which has always used sit-ins and barricades to pursue its aims. If you search the Guardian you'll see an article earlier this year that also talks about the imprisonment of managers in their own offices until they are prepared to talk to TU reps!

I also am aware of another French practice where those in the public sector, like ticket collectors on buses, who must collect some form of fare/tax don't collect it but are still there doing their job.

It's about time we in the UK got stuck in and did something similar.

Thanks again for posting this.

Del Ansar said...


A good item to post for once.

And even better that you show what can be done in America. Many trade unionists in the Uk and me included right off the US.

That article paints a a good positive picture particularly as the workers are mainstream and normally paid.