Will The UAW Strike Against Navistar?

By John W. Davis

August 12, 2010 Updated Aug 12, 2010 at 10:31 PM EDT

NEW HAVEN, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - On August 23, the UAW and Navistar will begin negotiations for a new contract.

However, with Navistar's Fort Wayne future in question, Indiana's NewsCenter investigates whether local workers are thinking about going on strike to keep their jobs in Fort Wayne.

National UAW President Bob King said a "big fight" was brewing between the union and Navistar, regarding a new contract.

UAW Local 2911 leaders said they are hoping for a quick resolution.

"We would never want to have a strike that's not something that we want to have. We didn't want to have one three years ago. It was sort of pushed on us, we were backed into a corner and that's where we ended up," said UAW Local 2911 President Tom Burkholder.

Meanwhile, Burkholder admits that it seems like Navistar has wanted to move out of Fort Wayne for a long time.

Burkholder said that makes local workers feel like Navistar does not like them.

However, Burkholder hopes that feeling is wrong because Navistar officials do visit Fort Wayne, and give the appearance that everything is fine.

"The most important thing for our members at this time is to maintain their jobs in Fort Wayne. I think most of the members are probably pretty content with what we have today. We just want to keep our jobs," said Burkholder.

In 2007, Navistar workers walked off the job on October 23.

That strike did not end until seven weeks later in mid-December.

UAW members who work for Navistar across the nation casted their strike votes Thursday.

Indiana's NewsCenter expects to learn those results Friday.

However, union leaders stress Friday's results does not make a strike imminent.

The results will only give the UAW authorization to strike if contract negotiations turn sour.




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