A day in the life


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Cortez Ali
Hi-Lo Driver
Bargaining Chairman
UAW Local 155
Integrated Manufacturing and Assembly (IMA)
Region 1
Detroit, Michigan

“Basically, a hi-lo driver is responsible for moving all the material around the building. We supply the lines with the materials to build the seats. The hardest part of the job would be being aware of the safety hazards. There’s a lot of pedestrian traffic in the areas we operate in. You have to be constantly vigilant about safety.”

Although presently off the shop floor due to his duties as a shop chair, Ali has seven years’ seniority as a hi-lo driver at IMA and worked for a decade in the parts division at Ford Motor Co.

“The best part of the job as a hi-lo driver is I operate the hi-lo all over the building. I like the sense of freedom to be in all areas of the building. I’m the type of person who prefers not to have to stand in one place.

“What makes me proud to be a UAW member the most is the camaraderie. It’s nice not to feel alone when the company comes at you with something that might be an unfair labor practice. It feels good to have an organization behind us that’s going to protect our rights.”

Mark Brehm
Loader Lift Arm Welder
Local 94
John Deere Dubuque Works
Region 4
Dubuque, Iowa


“My job at John Deere is work as a loader for a robotic lift arm welder.

“Each day, I check the schedule to make sure what parts the line needs for the day and then I start fitting up pieces of metal in my fixture. First, I tack weld the pieces together and load the robot. Then, I cycle the robot and load in stabilizers and service locks. Finally, I send the parts to the next station for the next part of the process and begin the cycle over.

“The most difficult part of my job is to mirror the line for the parts that the line needs for the day. The most dangerous part of my job is hoisting, which is when I, and others in the factory, lift up a heavy object to move it.

“The most satisfying part of my job is welding and putting out high-quality products that will be used all over the world.

“I am proud to be a UAW member because of the great benefits that are offered to me and the opportunity to vote on important matters.”

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