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United Auto Workers Escalate Strikes, Targeting Stellantis Assembly Plant

by Anna

In a significant escalation of ongoing labor disputes, the United Auto Workers (UAW) union has expanded its strike efforts by targeting a Stellantis assembly plant. This move follows weeks of strikes that initially began on September 15, affecting a single assembly plant from each of the “Big Three” automakers – General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis. However, as the strikes enter their sixth week, the UAW has extended the labor action to include seven assembly plants and 38 parts warehouses, affecting approximately 41,000 workers.

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Notably, the union had initially avoided striking at pickup and large SUV plants, which are the most profitable for the automakers. This strategy shifted two weeks ago when the UAW included a major Ford heavy-duty pickup and SUV plant in Louisville, Kentucky, in the strikes.

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Traditionally, the union has followed a pattern where it selects a specific company to target and reaches an agreement, which then serves as a model for settlements with the other two automakers. However, this time around, the UAW has expanded strikes across all three companies, signaling a more collective approach in these negotiations.

In its statement, the UAW highlighted disparities in offers from Stellantis, the entity formed by the 2021 merger of Fiat Chrysler and PSA Groupe. Despite having the highest revenue and profits among the three companies, Stellantis was criticized for having the least favorable terms concerning cost-of-living raises, the pace of wage progression for workers, temporary worker compensation, the transition of temporary workers to full-time positions, and other critical issues.

The move to target the Stellantis plant is seen as an indication to Ford and General Motors to improve their offers. A potential deal that seemed possible earlier appeared to stall, leading union officials to assert that the automakers must enhance their offers further.

While both Stellantis and GM have made wage offers on par with Ford’s proposal, UAW President Ray Fain argued that the current offers fall short of addressing the wage stagnation and lost ground experienced by workers over the past two decades. Fain emphasized that there is still room for improvement and that negotiations will continue.

As the strikes persist and the UAW targets Stellantis, the labor dispute remains ongoing, impacting workers and the automotive industry.

Please note that this information is subject to updates and developments in the ongoing labor negotiations and strikes.

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