UpDate 6-25-2011


We Have Been Played!




We Know We are the Violin,


But Who’s Doing the Fiddling?



Kerry Santori* – Pulled the Plug:


No Routes

No Contract

No More Negotiations

All Our Work Being Done By LINK  ( Matty Moroun )





U.A.W.  Negotiating With Link at Orion

Assembly to do our work.**(See Article)













Chris and I do not have all the answers!    If you have any Ideas or Resources:

Please email them to me at






Kerry Santori Represented Ryder Integrated Logistics in Negotiations.




Workers at GM supplier take strike vote at Chevy

Sonic plant

David Barkholz
and Mike Colias
Automotive News — June 22, 2011 – 12:59 pm ET

– About 125 workers for a critical supplier inside the General Motors Orion Assembly Plant are taking a strike authorization vote today as a means of accelerating contract talks.

The workers are employed by LINC Logistics Co., one of a half-dozen third-party vendors that work at Orion as part of GM’s strategy to hold down costs at the suburban Detroit plant.

LINC is performing logistics and parts sequencing at Orion.

GM is preparing to begin production of the Chevrolet Sonic, a small car that will be the only U.S.-made subcompact when production begins in August. The Sonic replaces the existing Aveo, which has not been competitive in the growing B-segment.

The LINC workers agreed, by card check, to join the UAW early this spring. So far the UAW has been unable to negotiate a contract with LINC, said Pat Sweeney, president of UAW Local 5960. The local represents hourly workers at Orion and workers from the third-party parts suppliers operating there.

Seeking ‘living wage’

The union is fighting for what it calls a “living wage” for LINC workers, who currently earn less than $10 an hour, the UAW’s Sweeney said. The straight-time annual wages for a worker earning $10 an hour is $20,800, less than the federal poverty line for a family of four.

Sweeney said a strike authorization would give the UAW the option to strike after a short waiting period, though the union wants to resolve the issue without a work stoppage. He said the number of LINC employees at Orion could double by the time the plant reaches full production.

“We want to get these negotiations behind us and launch this great product,” Sweeney said.

GM spokeswoman Kim Carpenter said the automaker does not expect the strike-authorization vote and UAW’s negotiations with LINC to affect the Sonic launch.

But it’s not clear how many UAW workers at the assembly plant would be willing to cross a picket line if a strike is called.

The UAW local has initial contracts to negotiate with at least three other parts suppliers operating at the plant, Sweeney said.

Only GM’s Shreveport, (La.) Assembly Plant also has a significant number of third-party parts employees on site. Shreveport, which is scheduled to close next year, builds mid-sized pickups.

A LINC spokesman did not immediately respond to a phone message.

Unique labor agreements

GM’s Orion plant has several unique labor provisions that have been controversial among UAW members.

To allow it to operate profitably in building a B-segment vehicle, the UAW agreed to allow the plant to be staffed by 60 percent traditional workers earning about $28 an hour and the other 40 percent earning an entry-level wage of $14 an hour. The entry-level workers also receive about half the benefits of traditional workers.

Orion has about 800 traditional workers, 500 of the entry-level workers and 200 people employed by the parts suppliers. Other GM plants have only a handful of entry-level workers, if any.

LINC, of suburban Detroit, provides materials-handling, subassembly, transportation and other services to automakers. It’s owned by the Moroun family of Detroit, owners of the Ambassador Bridge connecting Detroit and Windsor, Ontario.

LINC receives and distributes parts shipments for each of the Detroit 3, according to a preliminary prospectus LINC filed in May with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. In the filing, the company said it may seek to raise up to $169 million in a stock offering. It posted $245.8 million in revenue last year.

Its operation inside GM’s Orion plant “represents the first material-handling outsourcing arrangement of its kind for a third-party vendor within a GM assembly facility in the U.S.,” LINC said in the filing.

Contact Automotive News

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/article/20110622/OEM01/110629952/1261#ixzz1Q1pZVy9r



Update from Chris Smith (5-16-2011)

To my Union Brothers & Sisters,

On Friday May 13th I was contacted by a National TV / Radio Show, to come on the air and tell the world about what Ryder & GM has done to us!   I told them how arrogant Ryder has been & how Ryder Management has placed all the blame on Gm!   I also told them how GM has an agreement with the UAW to give preferential treatment to Union Shops because GM Plants are UAW Facilities!   The Show’s producer was very interested in what I had to say!

When I get on the show I will tell them how Ryder & GM has made big profits for the last 16 months by getting rid of UAW Drivers & replacing us with non-union workers.  And how now Ryder doesn’t want to give us our salary & benefits back because they claim we have to compete against non-union companies like Mattie Moroun’s!

I will also tell them how our Operation Manger at Ryder, Kerry Santori, said to me on our last day of work (a little over a year ago and in front of witnesses), “Do you think I would work for the little bit of money you-all work for?  I make eight times the money you guys make!!”   The arrogance & unprofessional nature of that statement shocked me!  He made that statement because he thought that we were gone for good!!

So now all we are asking for is our “little bit of $18.25” & benefits back!   Just for the record no manger at any company should ever say that to his or her employees!   So in conclusion,  I will be contacting UAW to get their approval to go on show sometime this week!

Always in solidarity,

Chris Smith


Open Letter From Chris Smith

To: my Union Brothers & Sisters & the World,

Ryder now is willing to talk about giving us some of our work back at Orion Assembly Plant. They claim they have to stay competitive with Link,(Mattie Moroun) because he put in a bid for our work! Well… our response is: Bull, GM & Ryder just don’t get it!!!  Why do we have to compete against a non-union company for our work?? And once again Ryder is putting all the blame on GM, ok shame on you GM !!!!  We want all the work back at Detroit Hamtramck & Orion Assembly plants. We gave Ryder & GM concession & they threw us out on the street! There will be no more concession! Mattie has no business in our plant. Remember, GM Plants are U.A.W Facilities. We are going to the national media to tell our story to the world & let people know how GM is allowing non-union companies to take U.A.W. jobs from loyal U.A.W. Workers!!!!!!!

Always in Solidarity,

Chris Smith.


U.A.W and Ryder Are Communicating!


Thank-you to all the Regions, Locals, Committees, and Organizations,

that Helped Us Make This Happen.

Without your support both directly and in-directly,

we would have been ignored by Ryder and G.M.

We would also like to thank the News Media,

Especially the Oakland Press,

for covering our efforts to force

G.M. And Ryder to do the right thing and negotiate in good faith!


For The Ryder Drivers:

You Should Be Receiving A Letter From The U.A.W. In The Near

Future.  So Keep An Eye Out For The Letter.


The Regions and Locals Were Stunned to learn that

only 8 trucks out of 123 were Union Drivers

Going Into Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly

(Home of the Volt)

The Only Union Trucking Company Was Penske Logistics.

The Rest were non-union and at least four of those

non-union companies were owned and operated


Matty Moroun

Ambassador Bridge owner Manuel (Matty) Moroun / 2005 photo by REGINA H. BOONE/Detroit Free Press




Did  Ryder Manager  Kerry Santori

Put The Blame on G.M. for Using Scab Drivers?

(see link below:  A Ryder Manager Responds)


An Open Letter From Chris Smith

To all are UAW brothers & sisters & supporters, we Ryder drivers have been picketing Detroit Hamtramck Plant to get our jobs back at Pole Town & Orion Assembly Plants! I’d like to thank everybody who came out & supported us!

I noticed about 99 percent of the trucking companies that bring the parts in to the plant are non-union companies! This has got to stop!  Gm claims they have such a great relationship with UAW & its workers then why are they going behind our backs and betraying us (Ryder drivers & UAW). This is a black eye to our Union & UAW worker’s!

We UAW Ryder drivers have been servicing Gm for about fifteen years. We also were supplier of the year five out of six years!!! So I ask why did GM & RYDER betray us & our union for a anti union company like Mattie Moroun???? Mmm something to think about! So we say to GM tell Ryder to come to the tables & GIVE US OUR JOBS BACK NOW!!!!! We are not going away!!!!!

Always in solidarity,

Chris Smith




April 4th Is An Informational Picket!

Click Here



Thank You Tim, You Hit The Nail On The Head!

(April 1, Comment)

Click Here



A Ryder Manager Responds!

Click Here



It’s Time To Call Ryder’s Bluff!

Click Here


Our Visit to UAW’s Three Day Bargaining Conference

Click Here


Quick Link To Our Flyers:


#1  Our Visit Detroit -Hamtramck Assembly Plant (Home of the Volt).

# 2  Our Visit to U.A.W. Three Day Bargaining Convention at Cobo Hall.

#3  Our Upcoming Picket on April 4th 8:00am At Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly.

# 4  Is Ryder Pulling A Fast One At Orion Assembly?


WHAT DO WE HAVE TO LOSE is the question we must ask ourselves.

Ryder has kicked us to the curb, not because we performed poor work, but because we exercised our Federally Protected Rights to Unionize!

RYDER has not negotiated in good faith before refusing to accept the bid for work at Detroit Hamtramck Assembly Plant.  Yes that is what I said — According to my sources, Ryder was awarded the work for D-Ham and turned it down.

Now Orion Assembly is ready to go online and once again Ryder has been awarded the work but plans to use TEMPS and or subcontractors  to do the work!












An Informational Meeting was held Sunday February 13th at The West Side Local 174 UAW. We had a large turnout and many topics were discussed.


A New Post Has Been Added: Visit to D-Ham Assembly Plant

(right hand column under recent posts)



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