Steel Markets

UAW/GM Reach Tentative Labor Agreement

Written by Sandy Williams

The United Auto Workers and General Motors reportedly reached a tentative four-year labor agreement on Tuesday, but it remains unclear how quickly operations will resume and how long before the automotive supply chain gets back to normal. The union has been on strike since Sept. 16, resulting in 30 facility closures and layoffs at GM plants in Canada and Mexico.

According to various reports, the UAW was successful in securing many of its demands. The new contract includes a wage increase of 3 percent over the next two years and 4 percent bonus payments in the final two years of the agreement. Newly hired workers will reach top pay in a shorter period and temporary workers are assured of a path toward full-time employment. Health benefit contributions by employees will remain unchanged. Workers will reportedly receive an $11,000 bonus upon ratification. GM has also promised to invest at least $9 billion in the company.

General Motors confirmed that an agreement was reached but said “details will be provided at the appropriate time.”

“The dignity, grace, and solidarity demonstrated by our members during the last few weeks are prime examples of what this union is all about — supporting one another in the good and bad times and never giving up,” said UAW President Gary Jones

The UAW GM National Council will meet today to review details of the tentative agreement and decide whether to continue the strike until the deal is ratified. Union members were instructed yesterday by UAW GM Vice President Terry DIttes to remain at their picket lines until further instruction.

Once the council approves the agreement, the contract will be shared with the full membership and put to a vote for ratification. The membership review and voting process generally takes about two weeks to complete.

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