UAW strike expands nationwide at GM, Stellantis facilities, as Fain invites Biden to picket line
Ford and UAW have made progress, union says, and strike will not expand at Dearborn automaker
At noon Friday, the UAW strike expanded nationwide, as union president Shawn Fain called on workers at 38 parts distribution facilities owned by General Motors and Stellantis to stop working. And he asked President Joe Biden, a Democrat, to join workers on the picket line.
In a video update posted on X, Fain, wearing a black, white and gray camouflage shirt, said the union had made “real progress” with Ford Motor Co. So far the two sides have agreed to reinstitute the cost-of-living allowances that went away in 2009 and eliminate wage tiers, by which recently hired employees are paid less than those who have been on the job for years.
“Many people said this couldn’t be done,” Fain said of reinstating the cost-of-living pay.
And in a first-in-its-history concession, Ford has agreed to allow workers to strike in protest when plants they don’t work at are closed, Fain said.
Notable for its omission as a concession sought or granted: The 32-hour work week.
“Ford seems serious about making a deal,” Fain said, and it was exempt from further escalation. One Ford facility, Michigan Assembly in Wayne, went on strike last Friday. Fain said workers will remain on strike until a deal is reached.
GM and Stellantis, Fain said, are a different story.
See Fain’s video for yourself here:
UAW President Shawn Fain Livestream Update 9/22/23 https://t.co/dyUvZDwAHS— UAW (@UAW) September 22, 2023
As a result, Fain said, “we will shut down parts distribution until those companies come to their senses and come to the table with a serious offer.”
Nearly 40 facilities are affected.
“This expansion will also take our fight nationwide,” Fain said. “We will be everywhere from California to Massachusetts, from Oregon to Florida.”
Fain said that targeting only select facilities at a company for a strike gives the union flexibility. This is the first time the union has been on strike against the entire Big Three at once. A stand-up strike keeps the union from paying $500-per-week strike pay to 150,000 members at once, which could only last about three months.
Fain invites Biden and others who support the UAW to show their faces at a picket line in solidarity with strikers.
We invite and encourage everyone who supports our cause to join us on the picket line from our friends and families all the way up to the president of the United States,” Fain said. “We invite you to join us in our fight. The way you can help is to build our movement and show the companies that the public stands with us and stands with our elected national negotiators.”
Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.