Middle-Class Job Losses Batter Workforce

Thirty years ago, Dan Fairbanks looked at the jobs he could get with his college degree and what he could make working the line at General Motors Corp., and decided the GM job looked better.

He still thinks he made the right choice. But with GM planning to end production of the Chevrolet SSR and shut down the Lansing Craft Centre where he works sometime in mid-2006, Fairbanks faces an uncertain future.

“Back when I hired in at General Motors 30 years ago, it seemed like a good, secure job,” said Fairbanks, president since June of UAW Local 1618. Since then, “I’ve seen good times and I’ve seen bad times. This qualifies as a bad time, in more ways than one.”

Many of the country’s manufacturing workers are caught in a worldwide economic shift that is forcing companies to slash payrolls or send jobs elsewhere, leaving workers to wonder if their way of life is disappearing. Read the article here.