What more can Maytag workers do?

What more can Maytag workers do?
Date April 26, 2005
Section(s) Opinion
To the Editor:

(Maytag should) just set a date for closing the plant and let us get on with our lives. We’ve lived in gloom and doom for three or more years now, with the threat of this axe hanging over our heads.

At the communication meetings, everyone tells us how good we’re doing, how many improvements we’ve made, about the new RCIs, etc, etc. They show us slides on the overhead about how we’re doing on our core metrics, safety, quality, cost and delivery. Our quality is the highest it’s ever been, our SCR is the lowest it’s ever been, but it has never been enough. It never has been about those items anyway.

This plant has never been the most expensive plant and most of the time we carry the others because of our efficiency. We’re making the same amount of machines now as we were three years ago when we had 2,500 employees. We should be making double what we’re making now especially since we’re all doing the work of two people. I am not overpaid but am paid well. If you think we’re overpaid, just ask (someone who has been hurt as a result of working in the factory. I know a guy who’s) had two work related surgeries in the last 10 years, shoulder and elbow and carpal tunnel. You think our jobs are easy? Just ask the supervisors who were injured this past year trying to run our jobs while we were on strike. One nearly lost his thumb!

(Maytag) will cut (its) nose off to spite (its) face and close this plant just to prove us wrong . (Maytag) just wants to break the union! I will not forget Galesburg and all they gave up, and Maytag still closed the plant anyway! It always seems to come back to the fact that we’re at fault, we’re not doing enough, we’re making too much, we’ve got too many benefits,etc, etc.

I can only speak for myself and the line I work on, the Dependable Care stack line. We are at 100 percent on our schedule attainment. Each day we come in, look at the schedule and then run those models. Each day we complete our scheduled run. The production workers at Maytag are without a doubt, the world’s best appliance production workers! What more can we do? We do not make the business decisions concerning new models, sales, exports, purchasing, etc. ..

Explain to me why the union, the state and Newton should give more? … We won’t give up any more or beg for our jobs!

Douglas Barcus



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