Newsweek: Marick Masters on GM, UAW deal
A probe into Detroit's United Auto Workers union has resulted in a 10th conviction as a former official has pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges. He accepted $120,000 in kickbacks and bribes from contractors with business at the UAW training center. Jeff Pietrzyk has accepted a plea deal that will require prosecutors to pursue no more than two years and three months' prison time, according to The New York Times. He is the former Administrative Assistant to the former Vice President of the UAW, Joe Ashton, and the 10th person to be convicted in an ongoing probe into corruption in the UAW. According to NPR, some union members believe that the probe is an attempt to weaken the union's bargaining position in its recently-concluded strike. In a tentative deal stricken on Monday, the UAW received neither, but raises and bonuses are in the offing. "I don't think they took a step backwards," Marick Masters, business professor and former director of labor studies at Wayne State University, told The Detroit News. "I think they took a step forwards. These are pretty big achievements by the union's bargaining team. I think my sense is they pushed it as far as they could. They weren't going to get the assurances of plant allocations that they wanted."