Tuesday, December 09, 2008


Matters around the factory occupation at Republic Windows and Doors continue to be tense, and many rumours abound. Earlier, when the media at the factory decamped en masse to cover the indictment of the Illinois Governor for corruption charges rumours circulated that the police were due to attack the factory. In response people from the local anarchist community, who have shown exemplary solidarity with the workers involved in this situation, showed up to act as a barrier, but the expected attack never happened. See the Pilsen Prole Blog for further details.
There has also been a premature rumour that the Bank of America, criticized for accepting government handouts but refusing loans to protect jobs in Chicago, has agreed to loans to cover the expenses of a proper agreement with the workers concerned. Once more according to the Pilsen Prole Blog, reporting from the local scene, these rumours are premature. negotiations are still ongoing. Molly is of the opinion that the bank, and other banks in similar situations, should face a demand to extend credit to a producers' cooperative that was willing to take over such facilities in such situations. This sort of proposal is a non-starter amongst the present Democratic Party, but it is not in such flagrant contradiction to their basic ideology that they couldn't be pressured into it. It's hard to say if this would be the best solution for individual groups of workers in all such circumstances, but, as it is, it is a valuable option that isn't even on the table at these early stages of our economic crisis. it may become not just an option but a great necessity in the near future.
In any case, here's the info from the Pilsen Prole Blog as of 6:15 Chicago time this evening about the present state of negotiations with the Bank of America.
Status of negotiations between UE and Bank of America... :
Here is the official word from Leah Fried at UE (I guess the Trib jumped the gun)
...Status of negotiations between UE and Bank of America:
"Negotiations between Bank of America, the UE Committee and the company are still in progress. No settlement has been reached. Bank of America informed us they had sent out a statement accidentally. Any statement regarding the result of negotiations at this time is premature. When the meeting concludes, the UE committee will return to the factory and report on any progress. Because UE is a democratic organization, only the 200 plus workers currently occupying Republic Windows and Doors will decide if a settlement is acceptable by a democratic vote. We will inform you of any changes."

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