So the UAW wants to raise dues?
The union gets the equivalent of 2 hours of pay per month from members with the hope of raising the rate to 2.5 hours, according to Reuters.
Forget for a second whether leadership has done anything to merit an increase other than spend tens of millions of dollars to try to organize transplant auto factories in the south and proclaim a voice for members in the operations where they work.
The fact is that longtime UAW-represented autoworkers at the Detroit 3 have not had a wage increase since 2003. That's 10 years with two more years to run on the current contracts. Inflation has diminished worker income over that time, except for a few hundred hires who did get increases in the last contract talks.
Yes, profit sharing was improved. So UAW members did participate to a limited extent in the huge profits earned by the Detroit 3 over the past two years. But the UAW eschewed even the pretense of a fight for higher wages. And my bet is that the union will do the same in the next contract talks.
Good enough. Therein lies the solution to the UAW's desire for higher dues. An increase should be considered, but only if it comes out of worker profit-sharing checks.
According to Reuters, a veteran Detroit 3 autoworker earning $28.125 per hour pays the UAW $56.25 per month in dues. That would rise to $70.32 per month under the proposed dues boost.
I propose that the union only get the extra $14 per month ($168) in additional dues if the money can be relatively painlessly taken off the top of an annual profit-sharing check of $5,000 or more. Anything less than $5,000 would mean no additional dues taken for the year.
UAW President Bob King has insisted right along that profit sharing is the most-practical way to reward workers for participating in the success or failure of the manufacturers. Shouldn't it be the same for the corporate coffers of the UAW?