Detroit: The United Auto Workers union called a nationwide strike against General Motors Sunday, with some 46,000 members set to walk off the job beginning at midnight amid an impasse in contract talks.
The decision, which the Wall Street Journal described as the first major stoppage at GM in more than a decade, came a day after the manufacturer’s four-year contract with workers expired without an agreement on a replacement.
Local union leaders met in Detroit “and opted to strike at midnight on Sunday,” the UAW said on its Twitter account. “This is our last resort,” Terry Dittes, the union’s lead negotiator with GM, told a news conference after the meeting. “We are standing up for the fundamental rights of working people in this country.” UAW officials said the two sides remained far apart in the contract negotiations, with disagreements on wages, health care benefits, the status of temporary workers and job security.
In its response to the strike, GM’s management revealed that its offer included a promise of $7 billion in investments that would save or protect 5,400 union jobs and address the issue of the two ‘unallocated’ plants. It also promised that a new all-electric truck would be built in a US plant.