“It’s no coincidence in my view that two different companies decided to lock out the two biggest industrial unions in Canada ~ the Steelworkers and the CAW ~ on the same day. This looks like an orchestrated attack,” said Communication, Energy, and Paperworkers Union President Dave Coles, whose union is in the process of merging with the CAW.“When you have these kinds of big gigantic struggles, you don’t who is going to win, but by the time this is done, these employers are going to have goddamn bloody noses. We are not going to allow Canadian employers to kick the shit out of Canadian workers.”
“President Obama talks a lot about creating goods jobs in America. I hope that his idea isn’t taking good-paying jobs from Canada and creating low paying jobs in the U.S. Otherwise, we are going to go to be in a race to the bottom.”
"Rio Tinto has declared war not only on USW members but on our communities, on Quebec and on Canada," said Quebec Director USW Daniel Roy. "We believe Rio Tinto will use its attacks in Alma to begin a major assault on workers and communities around the globe."
Jane Slaughter, writing for Labor Notes, also picks up the CAW story, highlighting the history and current projection of Caterpillar's strategy for battering quality wages and union benefits:
The concessions Cat is demanding in London are “an insult to the membership,” Scott says. Though the company posted a record profit of $4.9 billion for 2011, with even higher profits predicted this year, it wants $18.50 off the $35-an-hour wage for over half the workforce, to eliminate cost-of-living increases, retiree benefits, and the defined-benefit pension plan, and to hike drug insurance costs. On the day profits were announced CAW picketed 12 Cat dealerships and service centers across the country.