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Hourly Workers At GM's Bowling Green Plant Join Nationwide Strike

Lisa Autry

Some of General Motors' 900 hourly workers in Bowling Green are picketing outside the Corvette Assembly Plant after negotiations over a new labor contract hit a stalemate.  They're joining roughly 49,000 of their counterparts in the first nationwide strike since 2007.

GM employees walked off their jobs Sunday night at 11:59 p.m., 24 hours after their four-year contract expired.


WKU Public Radio spoke with some of the local workers who are braving sweltering heat to picket along Corvette Drive.  Some have been there since 3:00 a.m. Monday.  Jason Watson is a member of UAW Local 2164 and serves as the local bargaining chairman.  He says one of the main sticking points is the use of temporary workers. 

"The problem that the union has is that they string people along on a temporary basis for years on end without a clear cut path to permanent employment, Watson explained.

The Bowling Green factory currently has 43 temporary workers, a relatively small percentage compared to other GM facilities. 

Leaders at the Corvette Plant declined to give media interviews on Monday.

Lisa is a Scottsville native and WKU alum. She has worked in radio as a news reporter and anchor for 18 years. Prior to joining WKU Public Radio, she most recently worked at WHAS in Louisville and WLAC in Nashville. She has received numerous awards from the Associated Press, including Best Reporter in Kentucky. Many of her stories have been heard on NPR.
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