Page 89 - Part One of a Two-Part Story: We Worked for General Instruments
ISSUE : Issue 49
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1988/8/1
food outlets: on their feet, heat, low wag? es. So they realize how good they did have it, when they were at General Instruments. They realize it now. I'd say today if that industry was in Syd? ney, paying the girls 5 or 6 dollars an hour--same supervisors--it'd be the best job in Canada. With the Canadians running it. (Well, who was running this thing?) Ameri? cans . Even our managers were Americans. Our management out on the floor was American. Our comptrollers were Americans. The man that handled the money was American. And we had a comptroller here from Canada, but he went under the directions of the comptrol? ler from Joliet, in the United States. We had managers here that were from Canada--at the end of it, not at first. But they went under the directions of management in the United States. Everything was sent through a memo from the United States, to run the operation. (And you're suggesting that Americans would run it differently than Canadians.) Defi? nitely. We could get more production. Jo? liet was running for 20 or 30 years doing the same business. In Sydney we were run? ning for 4 years, and the girls broke the production record of Joliet's 20 years. The people that worked for General Instruments (in Sydney), they mastered the jobs. They were the best bunch of girls. I'm telling you, if an industry came into Cape Breton right now, and needed girls to work, and I went in there as production manager, and I hired on the girls that worked for me at General Instruments--I'm telling you--in a month, under training, they'd be up to production, the standards. (So, you're saying if Canadians had run that plant ) They'd be still there. I'm telling you. Maybe, possibly, not still there as large as it was, but there'd be part of it still there. Because, if they had of let Canadians run the plant, as Cape 'Oceon Jtentalsitd. Contractors Lawn & Garden Equipment Equipment Compressors Tillers Welders Sod Cutters Drills, Saws Air Eators General Engine Hoists Jacks Tow Bars & Much More... Call: GLACE BAY 849-1616 South (Campbelis Corner) - P. O. Box 265 Bretoners, we would have fought to get this to stay here. Because--(the government) was going to increase the transportation costs in Nova Scotia. The truckers, the trains-- anything that was in transportation--was going to increase. So that was going to be a big burden on General Instruments. (So these fellows went up to Halifax. Who were they--Americans or Canadians?) They were Americans. And I said, "Why don't you take up a couple of Cape Bretoners?"--a mixture of Tories, Liberals--"go up with you. And we'll lobby those guys. Our fel? lows that we know." (What would you be fighting for?) To just maintain the transportation costs for any new industry that came in. We were trying to get more industries in. Because Cape Breton was located that you had to import and export. And if you're going to increase the transportation costs, you're going to increase the import and the export (costs), and they're going to run them out of business. (So the Americans went up to Halifax. And they asked for....) To maintain the rates-- not to increase it. They didn't want to lower it. Just to maintain the rate that was on the books then. (And what was the result of that.) The result was that the increase was going through, and it did go through--of the transportation costs. I think if Cape Bretoners, as Canadians... had lobbied our M.L.A.s, and had of talked to them, and told them, you know, "This is a thousand employees, that we're supple? menting second income."... I quit 3 times there, 3 or 4 times. It was a nerve-wracking job. Nerve-wracking. The Americans wouldn't give you the time of hell. I'm telling you, I walked out of THE TREASURE COVE GIFTS AND HANDCRAFTS High quality gifts and crafts from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and abroad 1-902-564-8158 '_' Children's books and toys - pre-school to 12 years 1-902-539-3035 Open Mon.-Sat. 9-6, Thurs.-Fri. until 9 74 Townsend St., Sydney, N. S. B1P 5C8 Yellow Cello Cafe Bakery '' Pizza Deli rSS' 295-2303 > >* '' Outdoor J Terrace I iFacing the! Wharf in > (baddeck)
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