A total of 13,000 people did not hire at a General Motors plant in Missouri, a Ford plant in Michigan, and a Chrysler plant in Ohio.
at the request of the United Auto Workers (UAW) union.
According to the president of the union, Shawn Fain, if the employers do not meet their wage demands, the strike will be extended to several plants. The limited strike also spares the 825 million dollar strike cap of the 146,000 auto industry workers’ union.
The interest group is demanding a 36 percent wage increase within four years, as well as other concessions, including compensation for inflation.
The original demand of the UAW also included the 4-day work week, with the maintenance of unchanged wage conditions.
The collective agreement between the union and the car manufacturers expired on Thursday, and the interest representation gave the employers a deadline for the agreement until then.
General Motors and Ford are offering a 20 percent wage increase, while Stellantis, which also manufactures Chrysler, is offering 17.5 percent. The car manufacturers drew attention to the fact that the strike could be felt by the entire American economy and that the large wage increase could have an inflationary effect. In addition, they drew attention to the fact that moving towards the production of electric cars also entails costs for them.
Jim Farley, the general manager of Ford, believed that they had made a generous offer, which, however, the union did not want to hold a substantive negotiation.
In order to resolve the situation, President Joe Biden has assigned two economic advisers to mediate the resolution of the wage dispute, with the intention that both sides can leave the negotiating table as “winners”. In the White House on Friday, the president said of the situation that “nobody wants a strike, but he understands the frustration of the workers.” He acknowledged that the automakers have made a significant wage increase offer, but added that they must go further and share their record company-wide profits in the form of “record-breaking” collective bargaining agreements.
In the history of the American auto industry, it has never happened that workers at the three major car manufacturers went on strike at the same time,
not least because the UAW union has in the past negotiated with only one manufacturer at a time.
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