Two of Detroit’s Big Three automakers are furloughing more workers as the United Auto Workers strike nears the three-week mark without sufficient progress on a labor contract agreement.
Ford and General Motors announced Monday that the companies are indefinitely laying off an additional 500 workers at four Midwestern plants because the strikes have made it difficult for some of their facilities to obtain parts for cars. Ford said it was furloughing a total of 330 workers at its Chicago and Lima, Ohio, plants, while GM’s furloughs will impact some 164 workers at its Parma, Ohio, and Marion, Indiana, metal centers.
The move comes just days after UAW President Shawn Fain called on some 7,000 additional union members at Ford and GM to join the strike, bringing the total to more than 25,000 workers walking off the job. It also marked the first-ever simultaneous strike against Detroit’s Big Three.
“Despite our willingness to bargain, Ford and GM have refused to make meaningful progress at the table,” Fain said during the Friday announcement.
He added, however, that Stellantis would not be impacted by this latest strike expansion due to “significant progress” at the bargaining table.
Also Monday, the UAW submitted a new counteroffer to GM, but company officials say there are still significant gaps in the proposal.
The UAW has been demanding double-digit pay increases for all workers, the elimination of its tiered wage system, and more paid time off, among other things.
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