October 30, 2023

Fort Wayne UAW leaders 'pumped up' as General Motors strike ends with tentative agreement

Article origination IPB News
Full details of the agreement haven’t been shared publicly yet but it is expected to be very similar to the agreements struck with Ford and Chrysler-parent Stellantis last week.  - Rebecca Green/WBOI News

Full details of the agreement haven’t been shared publicly yet but it is expected to be very similar to the agreements struck with Ford and Chrysler-parent Stellantis last week.

Rebecca Green/WBOI News

The United Auto Workers union will end its month-and-a-half-long strike at General Motors after reaching a tentative agreement with the company, according to a video announcing the deal posted to the union’s social media pages.

Full details of the agreement haven’t been shared publicly yet but it is expected to be very similar to the agreements struck with Ford and Chrysler-parent Stellantis last week.

Holli Murphy is president of UAW Local 2209, which represents GM workers at a Fort Wayne assembly plant.

“The gains I mean, they are huge. People are excited. They're pumped up,” Murphy said. “The public, everybody behind us are pumped up, you know, because we don't only raise everything for, you know, the big three workers, we raised everything for the middle class.”

According to the UAW announcement, workers will get a 25 percent raise over the course of the four-year contract under this deal. That means top wages will be over $40 an hour. Workers at theGM Components Holding plant in Kokomowere once part of a separate “tier” that received lower wages. Under this new agreement, those workers will be part of the same wage scale as the majority of the company’s hourly manufacturing workers.

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More details will be made available after UAW leadership votes on whether to send the agreement to members. After that, workers will get to vote on whether to accept the contract — or reject it and restart the strike.

The union originally said it was demanding a 40 percent raise in hourly wages. Rich LeTourneau, bargaining chair for Local 2209, said 25 percent is less, but “that’s collective bargaining.”

“I've been in negotiations my whole life. And you can keep that mountain as high as you want. Doesn't mean you're going to get to the top of it or everything in that mountain,” he said. “It's a great foundation.”

Adam is our labor and employment reporter. Contact him at arayes@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @arayesIPB. Contact WBOI's Tony Sandleben at tsandleben@wboi.org or on Twitter at @tony_WBOI.

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