DETROIT – The UAW has just released a video showing that Big Three CEOs make far more than their counterparts at rival automakers and can easily afford the union’s demands. The new video, “Competition,” shows that average pay last year for the CEOs at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis was $25 million — five times the $5 million average for their counterparts at other leading automakers.
The video can be accessed at this link, and the media is invited to use the footage.
“Competition” uses a host of statistics to show how the Big Three have been plowing money into excessive CEO pay and outsized returns for rich investors.
- Over the last four years, the Big Three’s profits in North America have shot up 65%.
- Over the same period, Big Three CEO pay has risen 40%.
- Last year, the Big Three CEOs made 500% more than their counterparts at Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Kia, and Volkswagen, BMW and Mercedes.
- Ford, GM and Stellantis have also poured money into stock buybacks, which have risen an astonishing 1,500 percent over the last four years.
The video also shows that Big Three price gouging, not UAW pay, has been responsible for rising car prices in recent years. Average new car prices went up 34% over the last four years while pay for UAW members rose just 6%.
The cost of labor for the Big Three is around 4 to 5 percent of total operations. The video notes that Ford, General Motors and Stellantis could double UAW wages, not raise car prices and still make billions of dollars.
UAW President Shawn Fain narrates the video, and here is an excerpt from his remarks:
“The Big Three want you to believe that what we are asking for is dangerous and unrealistic. What is truly unrealistic is to keep making record profits year after year and then think that the workers who made those profits are just going to settle for scraps. What is truly dangerous is for corporations and the billionaire class to continue making out like bandits while the working class gets left further and further behind.
“That is why these companies and the corporate media are so desperate to try and convince the American people that unions are the problem. We are NOT the problem. This so-called ‘competition’ is the problem. Corporate greed is the problem. Our solidarity is the solution.”
The UAW’s historic Stand Up Strike against Ford, General Motors and Stellantis began on Sept. 15. The Stand Up Strike is a new approach to striking. It is the first time the union has struck all Big Three automakers at the same time. But instead of all 150,000 UAW autoworkers walking out at once, select locals have been called on to “Stand Up” and strike.
Currently, 25,000 UAW members are on strike against the Big Three. Members at five assembly plants and 38 parts distribution centers in 21 states have joined the walk out. If the automakers fail to make substantial progress in negotiations toward a fair contract, more locals will be called on to Stand Up and join the strike.