MUNICH — (MunichNOW News) — Today in Bavaria, for the first time in over two decades, steel workers (including the automotive industry) will lay down their tools for a 24 hour strike. It has been much longer in other German states since workers chose to walk off their jobs.
The points which differ between the union IG Metall which represents the workers and that which represents the industries can be boiled down into two main areas. The workers are asking for a pay increase of 6%, and controversially in the eyes of many, a 28 hour work week for two years for employees who choose to care for family members or take care of other verified pressing family needs.
The support for IG Metall is strong amongst the workers, with some estimates as high as 75% of the workers supporting a prolonged work stoppage.
BMW has had record profits over the past three years, and even VW, which has been embroiled in scandals involving diesel engines has managed to weather the storm and turn healthy numbers in both units sold and profit.
Both sides appear to be entrenched, however, the recent diesel testing scandal and the enormous profits of the last few years may have thrown a monkey wrench into the automotive industries’ negotiating positions