UAW International President Ron Gettelfinger asks Bruce Raynor and John Wilhelm to put their current conflict to rest, and urges John Wilhelm to settle any remaining issues with Bruce Raynor quickly and reasonably for the good of all workers, locally, nationally, and internationally.
Read the full text of the letter below.
June 11, 2009
Dear Bruce and John,
Once again, I am respectfully appealing to each of you to seek a fast and fair settlement to the conflict between your two organizations.
As you well know, the attacks and counterattacks in court, in the media, and within the labor movement have become increasingly bitter and destructive. And they are doing increasing damage to workers, not only to those you represent, but to all of us.
UAW members are now facing perhaps the most critical challenge in the history of our union. As we work to rebuild a great industry and renew U.S. manufacturing, we need a united labor movement to stand with us and show the positive results of collective action.
The last thing we need is an endless internal battle that consumes resources which should be devoted to building real power for working families. The longer this fight goes on, the more it will be used against all of us by the Chamber of Commerce, NAM, the National Right to Work Committee, Richard Berman, and others who aredetermined to destroy everything we have fought for, together, in all our years as trade unionists.
We can't let that happen. The way to stop it from happening is for your two organizations to reach a settlement as soon possible. Joe Hansen's recommendations provide one possible avenue, binding arbitration is another.
Both of you have devoted your entire lives to creating a strong voice for working people. Each of you has accomplished a great deal - and once you put the current conflict to rest, I am certain that each of you will accomplish a great deal more.
International Union, UAW