GM and the United Auto Workers reached a tentative agreement, less than 48 hours after the union struck the automaker’s Spring Hill Assembly Plant in Tennessee, where it produces Cadillac’s popular SUVs and various engines used in other models across its four brands. Detroit Free. I learned journalism.
The UAW already has a tentative agreement it has reached with Ford Motor Co. Last Wednesday. It reached an agreement with Stellantis on Saturday that mirrors the one it struck with Ford.
Despite marathon bargaining sessions with GM that have continued into the early morning hours over the past few days, the two sides have been at an impasse, prompting the union to order a walkout at Spring Hill and increasing pressure on GM to get a tentative agreement. .
No details about the agreement between GM and the UAW are known at this time, but two sources familiar with the negotiations told the Detroit Free Press over the weekend that GM at the time offered financials identical to the Ford deal. This includes a 25% wage increase for the duration of the contract, a cost-of-living readjustment and the same profit-sharing formula. The vote is expected to take place after local union leaders review the terms of the contract with members in the coming days.
UAW President Sean Fine outlined the most important provisions of Ford’s contract Sunday night, saying he and union negotiators “wholeheartedly” support it for ratification. He encouraged people to visit www.uaw.org/ford2023 for more details.
more: Ford’s tentative agreement with UAW: Deal details and contract offer
The pressure was on to reach an agreement
The pressure has been intense on GM to get a tentative agreement with the UAW, especially with the growing strike at Spring Hill Assembly, labor experts said after Ford and Stellantis struck deals.
“All signs point to the endgame here,” Peter Berg, a professor of labor relations and director of the College of Human Resources and Labor Relations at Michigan State University, told the Free Press. “Once we get one deal, it allows other parties to look at that and say, ‘Okay, what’s good for us?’ “I think they are probably closer than not closer at this point. We are looking at a matter of days. When one agreement is reached, it will be much easier for the other agreements to come.”
The big driver is cost. GM said Tuesday that the Stand Up Strike campaign targeted by the union would cost it about $200 million a week in lost production revenue through the fourth quarter based on which plants were idled at the time. That number did not include GM’s Arlington Assembly plant in Texas where GM builds profitable large SUVs, which the UAW struck later that day. It also did not include the strike against the Spring Hill Association. Stellantis has not yet released a cost figure, but business experts estimate it will be similar to GM’s.
“Now is the time for GM to see the framework with Ford and go for it,” said Harley Chaiken, a labor expert and professor emeritus at Harvard University. “Otherwise they are paying $200 million a week with the uncertainty of more factories coming out.” University of California, Berkeley.
On the UAW side there was also pressure to end the matter, Berg said. Union leaders know some members are bearing the burden more than others, given that some have been on the picket lines since Sept. 15 when the strike began at GM’s Wentzville Assembly Plant in Missouri, the Ford Assembly Plant in Michigan and the Stellantis Toledo North Assembly Plant. Fain has since gradually expanded the strike to other facilities across Detroit 3 with about 45,000 of the 150,000 auto workers on the picket line at the strike’s peak.
“That’s starting to erode” for those on strike who are living on $500 a week in strike pay, Berg said. “At some point, the solidarity of the union fades and it’s important to maintain it because they all have to vote on the agreement. You don’t want to get that kind of division.”
Berg said there are auto parts suppliers who are concerned and are monitoring this closely. Many were forced to lay off hundreds of workers after the factories they supply with spare parts stopped working due to the strike.
While strikers at Ford and Stellantis are now off the picket lines and preparing to return to work as they consider their initial contracts for ratification, GM has the following facilities still on strike: 18 parts distribution centers, Wentzville Association in Missouri, Lansing Delta Association Township in Michigan, Arlington Assembly in Texas, and Spring Hill Assembly.
This story is evolving.
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