Woodcock Refutes SDS Charges Saying UAW's Is 'Simple Strike'
Leonard Woodcock, president of the United Auto Workers, told Harvard SDS members that the General Motors auto strike is neither "romanticism" nor "revolution" but "just a simple strike."
Woodcock made his remarks after a speech at the Business School's Public Affairs Club yesterday afternoon at which he reaffirmed his determination to prolong the strike into 1971 if a satisfactory settlement is not reached for his union.
About ten SDS members approached Woodcock after the speech, demanding a more militant stand by the union leadership. The SDS challenged the union decision not to maintain picket lines at GM's Framingham plant. Nonunion employees are continuing to work for the corporation at Framingham and other GM plants during the strike.
While conceding that the 1967 contract settlement was a "bad bargain," Woodcock rejected SDS allegations that he is "selling the union membership down the river."
Woodcock, who succeeded Walter Reuther as head of the mammoth 430,000-member UAW, spoke on the eve of today's SDS-University Action Group demonstration at Seymour Chevrolet in support of the auto workers.
"The notion that all workers are members of the affluent American middle class and have all got it made is just so much malarkey," he said.