Windsor Star

Buzz’s frustratio­n comes from too many jobs lost

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The recent news is good for some Windsor Ford and Oshawa and St. Catharines GM workers. But we have seen hundreds of thousands of job losses in the manufactur­ing sector and without a manufactur­ing policy, we will continue to see well-paying jobs leave Canada. As president of CAW Local 1973, I share Buzz Hargrove’s frustratio­n. The timing of the recent announceme­nts is suspect with an election called the same week.

I can relate to job loss. This past year, we have seen Lear close and the announceme­nt of the GM Transmissi­on closure in 2010.

It must be nice for Stephen Harper to announce good news, but where was he when I, Buzz and other leadership stood in front of workers who will no longer be able to provide for their families.

Over the past five years, Mr. Hargrove has had to repeat this. Prior to the closure of the GM plant, we held a number of meetings with government representa­tives, including Jeff Watson. We got absolutely no sign of encouragem­ent or anything positive out of those meetings. We asked for a meeting with cabinet ministers — still nothing but excuses. The only thing that I am happy about is that Mr. Harper did not have a majority government.

I don’t know how anyone can believe our community or country is better today than when the Tories took office. We have lost more than 200,000 wellpaying jobs, 20,000 in Windsor-Essex.

I am proud of what our union has done in highlighti­ng the issues that affect Canadians.

Buzz was a great leader and a man respected by many and he will be missed. With the leadership of Ken Lewenza, the Canadian Autoworker­s Union will continue to be front and centre on issues that affect working men and women. BILL REEVES

President CAW Local 19

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