Quad Cities rallies for John Deere workers on strike

Published: Oct. 21, 2021 at 10:27 PM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - The Quad Cities community showed their support for United Auto Workers on strike at John Deere Davenport Works on Thursday evening. This comes after a temporary injunction limits the number of union members on the picket line to eight at that facility.

The rally took place outside the Scott County Courthouse to show the judge that granted the injunction against UAW, that the Quad Cities stands with UAW.

“Who’s got the power? We have the power! What kind of power? Union power!” chanted about three dozen Quad Citians outside the courthouse.

Ron Schwener was one of the many at the rally, showing support to the UAW, especially since his son works at East Moline’s Harvester Works. “It’s important because they’re a vital part of this community; the economic impact these members have on this community. So is John Deere. I’m hoping it’ll be a short term,” says Schwener.

Various community leaders were there as well, including First Presbyterian Church Pastor Katie Styrt. She says the rally works to show Deere “we like them and support them and to let these workers know we have their back.”

Rock Island Alderman Dylan Parker also spoke at the rally; “the power I’ve seen down at the picket line is where we can transform solidarity. We can appeal to legislators, march through city hall all we want. It’s the brave brave individuals on the picket line in this weather tonight that are the ones showing us the light through our society.”

The injunction filed by John Deere and granted by a judge says those on the picket line were blocking traffic, trespassing onto the property, as well as “harassment, intimidation, mass picketing, and other indirect forms of violence and unlawfulness.”

As negotiations continue, John Deere released the following statement to TV6 on Monday:

“We are fully committed to the collective bargaining process and resolving the strike. We remain committed to providing our production and maintenance employees with the opportunities to earn the best wages and most comprehensive benefits in our industries.”

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