Thursday, June 17, 2004

SOLIDARITY COMES TO JAPAN


From the Detroit Free Press:

The president of the largest Japanese automotive union says he recently began pressing Toyota, Nissan and other automakers in Japan to stop "interfering with UAW efforts to organize" their U.S. workers.

In a recent interview with the Free Press, Yuji Kato, president of the Confederation of Japan Automobile Workers Unions (JAW), said he thinks the UAW and the Canadian Auto Workers union will eventually be successful unionizing plant workers at Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co., but the unions need to overcome anti-union sentiment among U.S. managers and many workers.

"We have met with management in Japan concerning organizing of their plants in the United States and we asked them to let the unions in the United States and Canada, if that's what workers decide they want. From our conversations, I think the major reason the UAW can't organize them is because of the U.S. management's resistance and because so many of these plants are in the South, where there is an anti-union atmosphere," said Kato, speaking through an interpreter.

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