With the election approaching, President Obama says he’s working hard to come up with incentives that will encourage American companies to bring home jobs that have been outsourced. However, an item in Reader Supported News sheds light on how badly American workers can expect to be treated by these companies:
Heavy equipment manufacturer Caterpillar Inc. has decided to shut down the 62-year-old Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) locomotive assembly plant in London, Ontario, and relocate operations to Muncie, Indiana. The move came after a labor dispute erupted between the company and its Canadian unionized workers, who refused to accept a 50% cut in their pay and benefits. Caterpillar purchased EMD in June 2010.
By relocating to Muncie, Caterpillar is expecting to save money by employing non-union employees. In London, the average hourly wage was $34. Down in Muncie, Caterpillar’s outlay will range from $12 an hour for assemblers to $18.50 for maintenance technicians.
Between 2005 and 2010, Caterpillar’s overseas workforce grew by 15,900 employees. During this time period, the company added only 3,400 Americans to its payroll.
Once word got out that Caterpillar was coming to town with 460 new jobs, residents of Muncie applied by the thousands, with some showing up at 4 a.m., five hours in advance, outside the company’s offices.