October 24, 2019

UAW Members Continue Vote, Await Friday's Final Tally

Article origination IPBS-RJC
UAW members strike outside the GM Bedford Casting Facility. - Seth Tackett/WTIU

UAW members strike outside the GM Bedford Casting Facility.

Seth Tackett/WTIU

Hoosier United Auto Workers members continue to participate in the national strike outside General Motors facilities awaiting the ratification of a new contract.

Bedford UAW Local 440 president Kevin Hutchinson says the tentative agreement addresses a variety of topics that he felt membership should vote on first before going back to work.

“The membership as a whole, they had various concerns ‘cause it’s pretty complex agreement. We were trying to fix a lot of things and that's why one of the things the council, while we were in Detroit, brought the whole contract to the membership and let the membership vote on it,” says Hutchinson.

READ MORE: Local UAW Leadership Prepares Members For Vote On Tentative Agreement With GM

The potential contract addresses higher wages, health care, and a path for temporary workers to permanent employment.

However, after being relocated to Bedford, Indiana, from the recently-closed Lordstown plant in Ohio this summer, Chrissy Defelice says the contract doesn’t provide job security that she and other members are looking for.

“Every plant should be worried,” says Defelice. “Lordstown wasn’t the first and Lordstown not going to be the last plant that they close. They’re in a business for themselves.”

While voting at the Bedford hall ends tonight, other locations including some in Indiana will continue to vote until Friday afternoon.

Indiana is home to four GM facilities in Bedford, Kokomo, Marion, and the Fort Wayne area.

UAW says it plans to announce Friday evening if the contract is ratified and the strike ends.

Contact Samantha at shorton@wfyi.org or follow her on Twitter at @SamHorton5.

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