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Farm Equipment magazine reports:

In the last two weeks since UAW John Deere workers went on strike after rejecting a labor agreement, the strike has shown no signs of slowing down. To gauge industry sentiment regarding the situation, a recent Farm Equipment poll asked dealers if they support the strike or not.

Roughly 54% of dealers indicated they do not support the strike, while 37% said they did and 8.5% weren't sure.

Commentary from dealers who do not support the strike suggested Deere's record profits don't necessarily mean employees should see raises. One dealer said, "When every business is struggling to find good employees, a strike is the kind of thing that holds a company back from progressing. Just because the employees see their company having large profits isn't a green light for the rank-and-file to get big raises. Employees have to understand that healthy profits for a company means more growth and expansion. It means the company has funds to put into R&D, advertising, product development, etc."

"As far as cuts to new hires, that goes on in every business with pension plans or retirement plans. With people living longer, that means more retired former employees are drawing from the pension plan. The union leaders are doing the rank-and-file no favors if they don't get the employees back to work. John Deere has great resources. If they need to move these jobs offshore to keep the company afloat, then they may have to do that. Then, Mr. Union Boss, where will your people be: on the unemployment line?"

Some stated the UAW was taking advantage of the pandemic as leverage, with one John Deere dealership employee stating, "While a pay raise may be justified, I believe they are taking advantage of the current 'worker shortage' and pinning Deere down when they have no other option. I believe this will set a precedent in many industries and further exacerbate the product shortages."

"John Deere is in the business of making money," said another John Deere dealership employee. "Profits are used to improve benefits for employees and research and development for new and improved products. I'm sure the unions are not going to be willing to take a reduction in pay when there are years of downturn. They want the protection of their wages and benefits. I have 2 children that work for unions, so I see the benefits. But I feel they drive up the cost and prices, which just gets passed on to the end user."

To view the complete report, click here.

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