1946

Considerable organizing work was still being done in Cleveland by 1946. In June, there was a National Labor Relations Board election at the Cleveland Electronics Company. The vote was for the I.W.W. or no union. The I.W.W. lost this one, as well as a later election at the Green Ball Bearing Company. However, they won at the Schrimer-Dornbirer Pump Company.

The union went on strike at the Pump Company on the morning after Labor Day for starting rates of one dollar an hour for all employees working on assembly and machine work with increases of five cents a month thereafter, until their rates were in line with those paid for similar work elsewhere. They also demanded time and one half for all hours over eight in anj one day, and a union shop. In retaliation the company sued the union for twenty-five thousand dollars as damages. It claimed that performance of some of its contracts had been unreasonably delayed, and, in some cases, made impossible by the union's actions.

Early in October the union and company arrived at a compromise agreement. The company withdrew its suit, agreed to pay time and one half for all hours over eight, and also agreed to a wage adjustment saightly less than the union had demanded.

The friction between the union and the management of the Draper Manufacturing division of Jones and Laughlin culminated in a work-stoppage in 1946 which lasted for seven weeks. Although neither management nor the Ohio Unemployment Commission would agree with them, the union insisted that a "lock-out" and not a "strike" existed. The union contended that a lock-out had occurred, because no legitimate offer of employment had been given. The union had sought a twenty-five cent increase, a reclassification of jobs, and new hourly job rates. The company offered the eighteen and one half increase typical of steel industry settlements, but included a change in the existing incentive system, which the union contended would have resulted in an increase of only about six and one half cents. The union also pointed out that the company had no right to change the incentive system approved by the Wage Stabilization Board without the agreement of the union as well as the Wage Stabilization Board. The company then withdrew its offer entirely, including the eighteen and one half cent increase.

The seven week struggle which resulted was relatively peaceful. It was terminated, when the workers decided that most of their demands had been met. The eighteen and one half cent increase had been reinstated and the incentive plan previously proposed by the company had been modified. Other issues, such as the rates for certain job classifications, were left over for negotiation.

At about the same time satisfactory increases in pay were negotiated by the union with the American Stove and Republic Brass companies in Cleveland.

From March 21 to March 25 delegates to the twenty-fifth national Convention met in Chicago. Nothing of great importance developed from this convention. Resolutions were passed against the Communist Party, wars, and the check-off.

In September a conference of the Marine Transport Workers was held in Houston, Texas. Among other th&ngs it passed a resolution commending the various unions engaged in the 1945 water front strikes for their show of solidarity, and reaffirmed the I.W.W.'s traditional stand in support of all workers in their fight against employers.