The United Auto Workers union announced they plan to strike at additional auto manufacturing plants by noon ET Friday if both sides do not make “serious progress” in their negotiations, said UAW President Shawn Fain.
On Sept. 15, 13,000 U.S. auto workers went on strike after automakers and their employees could not reach common ground between union demands and what the Detroit automakers are willing to pay.
Members of the United Auto Workers union began picketing at a General Motors assembly factory in Wentzville, Missouri, a Ford factory in Wayne, Michigan, near Detroit, and a Stellantis factory in Toledo, Ohio.
Currently on strike are workers from GM’s midsize truck and full-size van plant in Wentzville, Missouri; Ford’s Ranger midsize pickup and Bronco SUV plant in Wayne, Michigan; and Stellantis’ Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator plant in Toledo, Ohio.
The union’s demands include a 46% wage increase, restoration of traditional pensions, cost-of-living increases, reducing the workweek to 32 hours from 40 and increasing retiree benefits.
“Autoworkers have waited long enough to make things right at the Big Three. We’re not waiting around, and we’re not messing around. So, noon on Friday, Sept. 22, is a new deadline,” Fain said in a video released online by the union.
UAW is taking an interesting approach to strike. The union selected the plants as part of a targeted picketing in hopes to affect the production of these manufacturing plants by having a lack of parts.
“The ‘Stand Up Strike’ is a new approach to striking. Instead of striking all plants all at once, select locals have been called on to ‘Stand Up’ and walk out on strike. If the automakers fail to make progress in negotiations and bargain in good faith going forward, more locals will be called on to Stand Up and join the strike,” Fain said Monday.
GM and Ford released general statements on the ongoing talks, but both declined to comment directly on the union-imposed deadline Monday night.
Stellantis referred to a statement released Monday afternoon about discussions with the union earlier in the day being “constructive and focused on where we can find common ground to reach an agreement.”