G.M. Reaches Deal With Canadian Union – US 247 News


General Motors and a Canadian union, Unifor, reached a tentative deal on a new contract on Tuesday, ending a short-lived strike by more than 4,000 workers that began earlier in the day.

The deal includes the same raises and other terms that Unifor had agreed to last month with Ford Motor, including a 20 percent wage increase for production workers over three years and a 25 percent raise for skilled trades workers.

The contract must be ratified by Unifor members before it can take effect. Workers at Ford’s Canadian operation have ratified their contract.

Work was expected to restart at the three G.M. plants and distribution centers that were struck on Tuesday afternoon.

This agreement “recognizes the many contributions of our represented team members with significant increases in wages, benefits and job security while building on G.M.’s historic investments in Canadian manufacturing,” the company said in a statement.

The tentative deal was reached after nearly 4,300 Unifor workers walked off the job at midnight on Tuesday at three locations in Ontario: a vehicle assembly plant and stamping site in Oshawa that makes the company’s popular Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck; a plant in St. Catharines that supplies engines and transmissions to G.M. factories around the world; and a parts distribution center in Woodstock.

Unifor had been pushing G.M. to accept the same terms as those in the Ford contract, a practice known as pattern bargaining that the automakers and their unions have long used.

“When faced with the shutdown of these key facilities, General Motors had no choice but to get serious at the table and agree to the pattern,” Unifor’s national president, Lana Payne, said in a statement. “The solidarity of our members has led to a comprehensive tentative agreement that follows the pattern set at Ford Motor Company to the letter.”

Ford’s agreement with Unifor, in addition to wage increases, provides productivity bonuses, higher entry-level wages, improved pensions, cost-of-living allowances and other improvements. G.M. also agreed to convert all temporary workers into permanent employees over the life of the agreement.

Workers at G.M.’s CAMI Assembly Plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, are covered by a separate contract and did not go on strike on Tuesday. Unifor represents 315,000 workers in a variety of industries.

In the United States, the United Automobile Workers union is on strike at a G.M. pickup truck plant in Missouri, a sport-utility plant in Michigan and parts warehouses around the country. The U.A.W. has also struck two Ford plants. At Stellantis, the maker of Chrysler, Jeep and Ram vehicles, union members have struck one factory and 20 parts warehouses.

Altogether, about 25,000 of the 150,000 U.A.W. members employed by the three automakers are on strike. Like Unifor, the U.A.W. is seeking a substantial increase in wages, pensions for a greater number of workers, and a shorter time to move up to the top wage level.

Talks began in July, and the strike began on Sept. 15, when the current labor contracts with the companies expired.