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United Auto Workers Go On Strike Against General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis

Detroit's Big Three automakers failed to reach a new labor agreement before their contract with employees represented by the United Auto Workers expired at midnight Thursday, setting off one of the largest strikes to hit the U.S. in years.

The UAW said it was executing a so-called stand up strike strategy in which employees at a small number of Ford, General Motors and Stellantis factories walked off the job. Employees will be paid about $500 a week from UAW's strike fund, which sits at $825 million, according to The Associated Press.

"Tonight, for the first time in our history, we will strike all three of the Big Three at once," UAW President Shawn Fain said in a Facebook Live address late Thursday night.

Fain said three factories would be involved immediately: a GM assembly plant in Wentzville, Missouri, a Ford assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan, and a Stellantis assembly complex in Toledo, Ohio.

Some 12,700 employees were involved in all, the Reuters news service reports.

"The locals that are not yet called to join the stand-up strike will continue working under an expired agreement," Fain said.

He told CNN he doesn't expect any bargaining Friday but the sides may come back to the table Saturday.

Dozens of workers gathered outside of the Ford plant in Wayne as the midnight deadline approached.

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by Anonymousreply 27September 17, 2023 10:38 AM

A mass rally was scheduled for Friday afternoon in downtown Detroit.

"We will show our strength and unity on the first day of this historic action," Fain said. "All options remain on the table."

The work stoppage marks the first strike at the Detroit automakers since workers walked out on GM in 2019.

The UAW's demands include a 36% pay increase across a four-year contract; pension benefits for all employees; limited use of temporary workers; more paid time off, including a four-day workweek; and more job protections, including the right to strike over plant closings.

With talks at an impasse on Thursday, leaders at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis (formerly Fiat Chrysler) said they had made multiple offers to the UAW in recent weeks in hopes of inking a new deal for the union's 145,000 workers.

"I think they're preparing for a historic strike with all three companies," Ford CEO Jim Farley told CBS News earlier Thursday.

Ford said in a later statement that, "At 8 p.m. this evening at Solidarity House in Detroit, the United Auto Workers presented its first substantive counterproposal to Ford a few hours from the expiration of the current four-year collective bargain agreement."

After the strike was underway, Stellantis said it was "extremely disappointed by the UAW leadership's refusal to engage in a responsible manner to reach a fair agreement in the best interest of our employees, their families and our customers. We immediately put the Company in contingency mode and will take all the appropriate structural decisions to protect our North American operations and the Company."

And GM said, "We are disappointed by the UAW leadership's actions, despite the unprecedented economic package GM put on the table, including historic wage increases and manufacturing commitments. We will continue to bargain in good faith with the union to reach an agreement as quickly as possible for the benefit of our team members, customers, suppliers and communities across the U.S. In the meantime, our priority is the safety of our workforce."

Although the Big Three have been unwilling to fulfill all of the UAW's demands, they contend they've made reasonable counteroffers and are willing to negotiate further. In outlining their position, automaker officials say that they're under enormous pressure to keep costs and car prices low in order to compete with Tesla and foreign car makers, especially as the companies compete for a stake in the growing electric vehicle market.

"What their initial offer was, is to pay our hourly workers about $300,000 each, and to work four days," Farley said of UAW Thursday. "That would basically put our company out of business."

Although Fain acknowledged that the automakers had upped their wage offers, the proposals remain inadequate, he said. Ford has offered 20% over 4.5 years, while GM and Stellantis offered 18% and 17.5% over four years, respectively.

The strike could cause a surge in car prices, result in $5.6 billion in economic losses for the automakers, according to one forecast and reduce the nation's GDP by as much as 0.3%, according to Oxford Economics.

by Anonymousreply 1September 15, 2023 6:22 AM

I support these union workers. I hope they're OK. They were asking for a 32-hour work week. There was a 6-week strike in 2019.

by Anonymousreply 2September 15, 2023 6:29 AM

[quote] They were asking for a 32-hour work week

while still being paid for 40% more than for their current time worked. $60,000 electric cars shoved down our throats are already pricing automobiles out of reach for the poor and middle classes. Imagine what this new deal will do to the peasants.

by Anonymousreply 3September 15, 2023 8:59 AM

Good. The world doesn’t even need Stellantis, and Ford and GM need to stop making so many fucking tank size vehicles.

by Anonymousreply 4September 15, 2023 9:24 AM

32 hours a week?? For the same pay?

by Anonymousreply 5September 15, 2023 3:03 PM

This is what happens when the CEO gives himself a 40% pay raise. What did they expect? CEO's need to get it together. They can't take all the money for themselves and expect everyone else to lie back.

Things are changing and younger people don't want to work themselves to death for the rest of their lives. They are going to get great concessions that all those that are retired are going to be so jealous of but this is the way the world is changing. (This includes all workers everywhere) Workers are tired of the greed of the big companies and the result is going to be less for the companies and more for the workers. The straw has finallly broken the camel's back.

by Anonymousreply 6September 15, 2023 3:27 PM

Good on the Unions and the workers. In the end it's all about a good work-life balance.

by Anonymousreply 7September 15, 2023 3:52 PM

R3 = MAGA voting against her own economic interest.

by Anonymousreply 8September 15, 2023 4:00 PM

I'd love to work a 32-hour week. Two days (Sat. & Sun.) are not enough to relax and refresh. One of those 2 days is spent de-stressing. The other day is spent getting ready for the coming week. Sigh. For me, at least.

by Anonymousreply 9September 15, 2023 4:12 PM

Auto makers would love to move production to a third world country and pay non union workers half.

The domestic production of cars and trucks has been on life support for years. This could kill it once and for all.

Keep striking! That will show them!

by Anonymousreply 10September 15, 2023 4:25 PM

How many of them are Trumpers?

by Anonymousreply 11September 15, 2023 5:23 PM

Fiat killed Chrysler. They failed to put any big money into new model development, and as a result Dodge and Chrysler will go into the 2024 model year with 2 and 1 models respectively. Furthermore, the two cars they brought out, the Dodge Dart and its derivative, the Chrysler 200, we panned by critics and buyers. Kia and Hyundai have eaten Dodge and Chrysler's lunch.

Fiat destroyed the geese that laid the golden eggs, Jeep and Ram, by continuously turning out models that used cheaply sourced parts and inferior workmanship and turning these two brands, already with a poor reputation for quality, even worse. Jeep and Ram regularly appear at the bottom of customer satisfaction surveys.

Stellantis has only paid lip service to the need for new model development. For all intents and purposes, Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep and Ram are all brands on the express highway to the ash heap of history.

by Anonymousreply 12September 15, 2023 6:01 PM

The big three are already struggling with the EV transition and haven’t been able to scale any of their EVs outside of the Bolt (which GM foolishly cancelled and then revived for an unknown future date). Stellantis America doesn’t even have any EVs yet. This could be the death kneel.

by Anonymousreply 13September 15, 2023 6:58 PM

R11, who cares. At least this lot get paid....whereas tradies etc that worked for TFG are known to not get paid a penny. So f*ck you.

by Anonymousreply 14September 15, 2023 8:15 PM

DETROIT, MI — With UAW workers officially on strike to demand a 4-day, 32-hour work week, leadership with the Big Three automakers are reportedly struggling with whether to replace the union workers with robots or Mexicans.

"We really could go either way on this," said Ford CEO Jim Farley while lighting up a Cuban cigar with a stack of $100 dollar bills. "On one hand, robots work perfectly and tirelessly without complaining around the clock. On the other hand, President Biden is welcoming thousands and thousands of Mexicans across the border every day who will happily do these jobs for 32 cents per hour, 70 hours per week. What to do?"

"This is a real conundrum."

According to reports, there are currently 32,000 illegal migrants patiently waiting outside the picket line to take the place of the autoworkers while providing a superior work ethic for pennies on the dollar.

"We are tired of greedy corporations taking advantage of the American worker," said UAW President Shawn Fain. "We demand infinity money for less work forever. And we want to work from home. We believe this is more than reasonable."

At publishing time, automaker leadership elected to compromise and go with the robots but hire Mexicans to build them.

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by Anonymousreply 15September 17, 2023 1:37 AM

Babylon Bee? WTF?

by Anonymousreply 16September 17, 2023 5:02 AM

[quote]With UAW workers officially on strike to demand a 4-day, 32-hour work week, leadership with the Big Three automakers are reportedly struggling with whether to replace the union workers with robots or Mexicans.

Serves the workers right then if that comes to fruition. A 4-day, 32-hour work week is just being lazy.

by Anonymousreply 17September 17, 2023 5:19 AM

R11 most people in Unions are liberal-leaning.

by Anonymousreply 18September 17, 2023 5:19 AM

Not people in blue collar unions, R18.

by Anonymousreply 19September 17, 2023 5:22 AM

[R17] pretty gullible eh

by Anonymousreply 20September 17, 2023 5:54 AM

[quote]I'd love to work a 32-hour week. Two days (Sat. & Sun.) are not enough to relax and refresh. One of those 2 days is spent de-stressing. The other day is spent getting ready for the coming week. Sigh. For me, at least.

I already do that. CEO's of AMERICA!

by Anonymousreply 21September 17, 2023 5:58 AM

[quote] Big Three automakers are reportedly struggling with whether to replace the union workers with robots or Mexicans.

Let me guess, if they go back to work to prevent the robots and below minimum wage Mexicans, in a few years when the robots get even cheaper and faster, they will reward their workers who sacrificed a few years and give them a well deserved raise and keep them employed instead of the taking the cheaper option. Right? Right? Anyone? NO? I thought so.

by Anonymousreply 22September 17, 2023 6:07 AM

Barack Obama:

[quote]Fourteen years ago, when the big three automakers were struggling to stay afloat, my administration and the American people stepped in to support them. So did the auto workers in the UAW who sacrificed pay and benefits to help get the companies back on their feet. Now that our carmakers are enjoying robust profits, it’s time to do right by those same workers so the industry can emerge more united and competitive than ever.

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by Anonymousreply 23September 17, 2023 7:10 AM

Listening to a US Senator talk about a skewed ration [sic] of hours worked to pay/benefits is crystallized hypocrisy

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by Anonymousreply 24September 17, 2023 7:15 AM

R12 - Ram and Jeep are Stellantis’ bread and butter. Dodge and Chrysler are an albatross, but the other two help pay the bills.

What I’ve noticed about cars in general is how much more expensive they’ve gotten in the past 2-3 years. I looked at a Bronco Sport when they first came out in 2021, and the top trim Badlands model is now $4000+ more expensive than it was when it first came out. Jeeps are ridiculously expensive. The new Grand Cherokee carries a $5000+ premium over the previous generation. They blame Covid, labour, chip shortages and inflation, but it’s probably more like gouging. The strike will probably drive costs even higher. Throw in interest rates, and R3 has a point about affordability.

by Anonymousreply 25September 17, 2023 10:17 AM

One thing I have noticed over the decades buying cars, then the economy is good, the prices go up, when the economy is bad, the prices still go up!

The only difference in bad times is usually the major US car companies pull the "Made in America" whine and ask / threaten the government for a hand out or else they will shut down.

by Anonymousreply 26September 17, 2023 10:33 AM

[quote] What I’ve noticed about cars in general is how much more expensive they’ve gotten in the past 2-3 years.

In that time frame the economy has been run by the sort of people who think the peasants should be riding bicycles instead of affordable cars, who they then can wave to as they pass by in their limousines and Lamborghinis.

by Anonymousreply 27September 17, 2023 10:38 AM
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