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GM, Canadian autoworkers union Unifor reach deal to end strike

Unifor worker Rob Nimigon holds a flag at a picket line outside an entrance to the GM’s Oshawa assembly complex, where the company’s profitable Chevrolet Silverado trucks are built, after 4,300 unionized workers went on strike at three General Motors plants, including Oshawa, Ontario, Canada October 10, 2023.

Arlyn Mcadorey | Reuters

DETROIT — General Motors has reached a tentative agreement for nearly 4,300 Canadian autoworkers after the union representing those workers called a national strike early Tuesday.

Canadian union Unifor said Tuesday afternoon the “strike actions are on hold to allow the membership to vote on the tentative agreement.”

The union initiated a national strike Tuesday at GM’s four Canadian facilities, including an assembly plant that produces light- and heavy-duty Chevrolet Silverado trucks; production of some V6 and V8 engines used in a variety of vehicles such as the Chevrolet Equinox and GM’s full-size SUVs; a stamping facility; and parts distribution center.

“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 National President Lana Payne said in a release.

GM, in a statement, confirmed the “record” tentative agreement: “This record agreement, subject to member ratification, recognizes the many contributions of our represented team members with significant increases in wages, benefits and job security while building on GM’s historic investments in Canadian manufacturing.”

Unifor, which represents 18,000 Canadian workers at the Detroit automakers, took a more traditional approach to its negotiations than its U.S. counterpart. The Canadian union is negotiating with each automaker separately and using a deal first reached last month with Ford as a “pattern” for GM and Chrysler parent Stellantis.

Ford’s three-year deal included hourly wage increases of up to 25%, reactivation of a cost-of-living allowance to battle inflation and a shorter progression for workers to reach top pay, among other new or altered benefits.

The agreement, which covers more than 5,600 workers at Ford facilities in Canada, was ratified by 54% of workers who voted. 

This is breaking news. Please check back for additional details.

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