On Monday, October 30, the United Auto Workers at General Motors announced that they had reached a tentative agreement for their next union contract. This tentative agreement comes as the last of three, after they reached a similar deal in negotiations with Stellantis on Saturday, October 28, which in turn followed news of a deal at Ford on Wednesday, October 25.
The tentative agreements at all three companies still need to be voted on by the members of UAW, however, the workers won significant gains in the new contract offer. The driving force behind these tentative contract gains was a 44-day period of “stand up strikes” by the union members, where they chose select locations to take workers out on strike designed to impact the bosses’ ability to keep making money, but at the same time as allowing most of their members to remain working and preserving their strike funds.
The stand up strikes appear to have worked and allowed the UAW members at all three companies to win significant gains.
On October 25, UAW first announced a deal at Ford. That deal included raises of over 25% over the length of the contract, with workers at the top of the scale seeing 30% increases and workers at the bottom seeing a 68% increase. They also won language allowing them to strike even during a contract over plant closures, which is vital as the manufacturing of cars switches increasingly to electric.
Once Ford had fallen, then on Saturday, three days later, UAW announced that they had reached a similar deal at Stellantis. The Stellantis deal follows a similar pattern to the Ford one and has the lowest paid workers seeing 165% in raises. The deal also contains language to bring the Belvidere Assembly Plant back online with a new product.
Then only two days after that, a deal was reported with GM, which is said to again follow a similar pattern as the other two contracts did. Details of that tentative agreement have not yet been released.
The workers at all three companies still have to vote on the tentative agreements to make it final, but these contract deals amount to significant gains, after years of loss for the UAW members.