Striking John Deere workers receive truckload of food and supplies from fellow union members
As UAW union members at John Deere entered their 16th day on strike, a group of Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union (RWDSU) members delivered food and supplies in support of their efforts. Made by Local 110 members at General Mills and Quaker in Cedar Rapids, the donation included diapers, hand warmers, toiletries, food, frozen meat, as well as cases of cereal and snacks.
- READ MORE: Timeline of the Deere, UAW strike
“This is America’s heartland, and the heart our members are showing just who we are. We know that if we were in their shoes, they’d do the same for us. That’s what being in a union is all about, having each other’s backs,” says Shane Forbes, president of RWDSU Local 110.
“We’re just doing what anyone would do if their brother or sister needed help. Iowa is built on strong union jobs at these well-known brands make continued attempts to pull back on long-time benefits, which hurts us all,” says Bob Dixon, 1st vice president RWDSU Local 110 and Quaker chief steward.
“When unions are strong, Iowa families are strong. What our members are doing shows that firsthand. I’m incredibly proud of the work Local 110 did to rally these donations and has been doing in support of our sisters and brothers at John Deere. The demands of UAW members are the demands of the entire labor movement; an injustice to one of us is an injustice to all of us,” says Roger Grobstich, vice president of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU).
On strike since October 14, 2021, workers at John Deere are seeking a secure pension, fair wage increases, and health benefits. In 2019, the RWDSU Local 110 members, which also represents workers at Cole’s Quality Foods in North Liberty, Iowa, found themselves in a similar situation when they negotiated for similar improvements in benefits and wages.