The Flint Sit-Down Strike Audio Presentation


You know... there was talk about two weeks before the strike came, that they was either gonna walk out or try to bargain with management in regards to some of the terms that they wanted. Which at that time, if I remember right, was only about twelve or fifteen items that they wanted to imporve. One was wages and one was production... you know, standard of production. I don't remember what the others was, but they said that they was gonna ask for a meeting with upper managment at that time otherwise they didn't call it a strike, they just said they was gonna walk out. They was gonna refuse to work under those conditions, which they did.

I don't think they actually went out knowing that it was actually gonna be strike. I think they just more or less went out to show managment that they wasn't going to work under those conditions anymore. Hell, in plant four, in the heavy rain, them wooden block floors, you'd stand in water up to your ankles. You better be workin' too.

You pass out down there in the heat in the summer time they take you over to the hospital, they give you two salt pills and tell you to get back to work. If you didn't go, you was done.

Show Transcript Speaker: Ray Knotts. Interviewed by U-M Flint Labor History Project. Date of interview: 3-17-1980. Edited by Michael Van Dyke.

Copyright: ©2002 Michigan State University.