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GM strike forces unpaid workers to skim on groceries, seek part-time work



Nearly four weeks after the United Auto Workers strike against General Motors, employees feel the clips go without their regular paychecks.

They are scaling back at grocery stores, giving up meals at restaurants and even taking on part-time jobs while trying to get a weekly strike salary of $ 250.

"In a few more weeks, everyone thinks they're going to call your bank or creditors, go, & # 39; Hi, it's probably going to be late or criminal, & # 39; & # 39; said Mike Armentrout, who works at GM's Toledo transmission facility.

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UAW holds for new commitments from GM to maintain maximum vehicle production in the United States, according to The Detroit Free Press, with Mexico n producing a concern for many workers.The pressure increases to come to an agreement as losses for both sides go over and infect the automated supply chain.

Full-time workers on strike lose about $ 1,000 each r week, and that doesn't count the overtime many of them make.

Dennis Earl, president of UAW Local 14 in Toledo, said the union is trying to help workers by giving them advice on how to handle bills that pile up. The union's kitchen serves meals around the clock, and donations of food and household items pour in from other working groups in the area. "Nobody's going to go hungry," he said.

"As this happens and gets harder, it's going to be a little uneasy, but mostly these people are in it for the long term," he said.

A UAW flag flies near strikers outside the General Motors Orion Assembly facility in Orion Township, Michigan. (AP Photo / Paul Sancya, File)

GM dealerships across the country are reporting healthy stock on their lots, but they lack parts to fix customers' vehicles, and some have had to cancel service agreements.

The strike immediately shut down about 30 GM plants across the US plants in Canada and Mexico remained open for a while, but a gathering place in Canada and another in Mexico has been forced to close due to lack of parts, and analysts expect the closures to spread.

Many workers stockpiled emergency money after months of trade union warnings about a strike, but they said GM's temporary workers doing much less could not do it.

Randilyn Smith, a temporary worker and a single mother of three, had to do something while she saw that the savings were running out.

"I actually put my house up for sale. And I thought GM would be the way to provide for my family," Smith told WJRT in Flint, Michigan. "I worked as much overtime as I could, 12 hour shifts and every weekend."

The Anderson Economic Group, a consulting firm in East Lansing, Michigan, estimates that 75,000 workers at car-sharing companies have been laid off or have had their pay cut due to the strike.

It does not include waitresses, clerks and others who watch their hours go down because striking workers are not spending money.

Truck driver Glen Hodge, who pulls scrap metal from a stamping plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee, has been in the job for three weeks.

Since then, he has sought unemployment, dropped his cable TV package, stopped going out to dinner with his wife, and even cut down on dog food. It upsets him a little when he sees gift cards and donations pouring in for the striking workers.

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"What about the rest of us?" he said Wednesday. "There's a bunch of us sitting and getting nothing."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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