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Reader says GM “fired” from Oshawa

Dear Editor,

It’s a good thing for GM CEOs that the Canadian taxpayers don’t fire them for their mismanagement of their business when they came knocking on our door looking for bailout money. The only reason GM today is able to announce closure of its Oshawa plant is because Canadian taxpayers saved their jobs in the first place.

So they reward us by firing our workers, there is something wrong with this picture.
Canadian taxpayers didn’t bail out GM to ship our jobs out of the country to Mexico. I am mad as hell as a taxpayer, outraged as a loyal GM buyer, and feel for GM workers who are losing their jobs, and gave up so much in an attempt to save their jobs.

GM workers today start at $20/hr, reduced benefits, pensions are a thing of the past. Its retirees who were thrown under the bus having their benefits cut by 20 per cent after working 30 and 40 years on a line. And all lost in this announcement are the parts suppliers, all but forgotten, for these workers have had to endure wage cuts, lost benefits and working for $15/hr. So much for good paying jobs in the auto sector.

And let’s no forget all levels of government who always extend a helping hand with taxpayer money. We never ever turned our back on GM, not once, adding up the GM bill cost to Canadian taxpayers billions in bailout money and a billion more for research, buildings, paint shop, and an endless list for 20,000 jobs lost, billions lost in revenue, lost real estate value, needless infrastructure and thousands of workers facing an uncertain future trying to live on $14/hr jobs in today’s new economy, the service sector. Not a pretty picture.

For the union it’s a bittersweet time, who thought they had signed a collective agreement with job security for its members. It’s not worth the piece of paper it’s written on. If your words are no good and your signatures are no good, then there is no such thing as job security.

As a loyal GM buyer I will never ever again buy a GM product. Loyalty works both ways. By my action I’m sending a message to GM, no new product in Oshawa, “you’re fired.”

Gord Vickers