UAW announces strike at facilities across 20 states; Doesn’t include Rochester GM plant

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The ongoing United Auto Workers strike is expanding to 38 facilities across 20 states but doesn’t include the General Motors plant in Rochester on Lexington Avenue.

UAW President Shawn Fain called for union members to strike at noon on Friday at 38 General Motors and Stellantis facilities across 20 states. He said the strike call covers all of GM and Stellantis’ parts distribution facilities.

The strike call notably excludes Ford, the third member of Detroit’s Big Three, suggesting the UAW is more satisfied with the progress it has made on a new contract with that company.

Workers at the GM plant in Rochester demonstrated on Tuesday, calling on the company to meet the union’s demands, but the workers have yet to go on strike.

The General Motors plants being told to strike are in Pontiac, Belleville, Ypsilanti, Burton, Swartz Creek and Lansing, Michigan; West Chester, Ohio; Aurora, Colorado; Hudson, Wisconsin; Bolingbrook, Illinois; Reno, Nevada; Rancho Cucamonga, California; Roanoke, Texas; Martinsburg, West Virginia; Brandon, Mississippi; Charlotte, North Carolina; Memphis, Tennessee; and Lang Horne, Pennsylvania.

The Stellantis facilities going on strike are in Marysville, Center Line, Warren, Auburn Hills, Romulus and Streetsboro, Michigan; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Plymouth, Minnesota; Commerce City, Colorado; Naperville, Illinois; Ontario, California; Beaverton, Oregon; Morrow, Georgia; Winchester, Virginia; Carrollton, Texas; Tappan, New York; and Mansfield, Massachusetts. The strike will include two facilities each in Center Line and Warren.

The UAW is employing a strategy of announcing targeted strikes with short notice, focusing on key plants that cause other facilities to stop production because of a lack of parts.

Around 12,700 UAW members went on strike at midnight ET Sept. 15 when the previous contract between the union and Detroit’s Big Three expired. The union is seeking 40% increases in hourly pay, a reduced 32-hour workweek, a shift back to traditional pensions, the end of compensation tiers and a restoration of cost-of-living adjustments.

Talks between the union and the automakers are continuing. The companies have offered pay increases of roughly 20%, thousands of dollars in bonuses, retention of the union’s platinum health care and other improved benefits.

The Big Three have also begun laying off workers at plants where they say there is no work. GM said Wednesday that it idled a manufacturing plant in Kansas, and laid off almost all of the approximately 2,000 people working there. Ford and Stellantis announced smaller numbers of layoffs.

The strike began with walkouts at GM’s midsize truck and full-size van plant in Wentzville, Missouri; Ford’s Ranger midsize pickup and Bronco SUV plant in Wayne, Michigan; and Stellantis’ Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator plant in Toledo, Ohio.

A separate strike affecting a Mercedes-Benz supplier in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, also began this week. The UAW said Wednesday that 190 workers at ZF Chassis Systems are now on strike, seeking better pay and benefits.

The plant supplies front axles to a nearby Mercedes-Benz factory. Fain invited President Joe Biden to join workers on the picket line.