UAW touts 'major gains' in tentative agreement with GM
The United Auto Workers has reached a proposed tentative agreement with General Motors Co. that represents "major gains," the UAW said in a news release Wednesday morning.
The more than 48,000 GM-UAW employees, including 17,000 in Michigan, have been off the job for 31 days - the longest national strike against GM since 1970. About 200 local union leaders representing GM employees are expected to convene in Detroit for a national council meeting on Thursday to vote on whether to send the tentative agreement to the UAW membership and on when the strike will end.
The United Auto Workers has reached a proposed tentative agreement with General Motors Co. that represents "major gains," the UAW said in a news release Wednesday morning. (Photo: Paul Sancya, AP)
"We can confirm the UAW's statement regarding a proposed tentative agreement.," GM spokesman Dan Flores said in a statement. "Additional details will be provided at the appropriate time."
Details of the proposed deal were not immediately available Wednesday morning. But a source familiar with the situation said the agreement pledges ratification bonuses of more than $8,000 per member.
"The number one priority of the national negotiation team has been to secure a strong and fair contract that our members deserve," UAW Vice President Terry Dittes said in a statement Wednesday.
In a statement, UAW President Gary Jones added: "I could not be prouder of our brothers and sisters, our National Negotiators, and the National Council as they continue to fight one day longer to secure the best deal for our members."
The UAW's strike against GM entered its second month Wednesday as talks resumed in the morning. Job security, production allocation and decreasing an eight-year window for permanent new hires to reach the top of the pay scale were some of the final issues being hammered out. Talks went into the late evening Tuesday.
The union and its members have said health care, wages, job security and securing a pathway for temporary workers to reach permanent seniority were some of their top priorities.
If the UAW's GM national council members vote to recommend to send the proposed deal to the membership, they also will determine if the strike will end immediately or upon ratification by the members.
The tentative agreement comes after GM CEO Mary Barra and President Mark Reuss joined negotiators Tuesday morning at the bargaining table for the first time.
The UAW's national council is meeting at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in the Ambassador Ballroom of the Marriott Hotel at the Renaissance Center.
GM has lost more than $1.5 billion because of the strike, while thousands of affected workers in Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio and Texas have lost more than $835 million, according to an updated report on Wednesday from East Lansing's Anderson Economic Group. Anderson also estimated lost federal income and payroll tax revenue on wages alone totals $313 million and that Michigan has lost $18.5 million in income tax revenue.
Negotiators had made progress over the past weekend after a tumultuous press war the week prior.
The automaker and UAW have been in talks since July. Discussions intensified when the two sides failed to reach a tentative agreement before the Sept. 14 contract deadline, and the union ordered a strike. Since then, a number of proposals had been shot down.
A proposal from the automaker on Oct. 7 included higher wages, secured the union's health care benefits and gave temporary employees a path to permanent employment, GM said.
A counterproposal from the union included "all of your outstanding proposals that are at the main table and unsettled," Dittes wrote in a letter to local union leaders Friday.
The UAW-GM strike isn't the only walkout the union is overseeing as it works through the negotiation process with two other companies: Aramark Corp. and Mack Trucks Inc.
The UAW's 850 members employed by Aramark, which provides maintenance at five GM facilities - Hamtramck, Warren, Flint, Grand Blanc and Parma, Ohio - have been on strike since Sept. 15.
More than 3,600 UAW members employed by Mack Trucks walked off the job Sunday over issues including wage increases, job security, wage progression and health and safety.[email protected] Twitter: @BreanaCNoble
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Bargainers for General Motors and the United Auto Workers reached a tentative contract deal on Wednesday that could end a monthlong strike that brought the company's U.S. factories to a standstill. The deal,
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