UAW strike against GM forces more worker furloughs

The strike by UAW workers against General Motors is now having an effect on workers at GM facilities that aren't involved in the walkout.

As the strike heads into a ninth day, facilities in the U.S. and Canada have had to temporarily layoff thousands of workers.

In Ohio and Canada, GM has furloughed more than 1,200 employees at engine plants.

Last week, 2,000 workers at GM’s assembly plant in Oshawa, Canada were also furloughed.

Nearly 50,000 full-time factory workers hit the picket lines more than a week ago, making this the longest nationwide walkout against GM since 1970.

The walkout is also affecting auto-parts suppliers in the U.S. that produce components for the company’s cars and trucks.

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The issues that the UAW is fighting for include better new-hire pay, fewer temp workers and the preservation of existing health-care plans.

UAW members may reportedly remain on the picket line against General Motors until they OK a tentative agreement, which could add at least another week to the work stoppage.

When it called the strike, the UAW GM council voted that employees would not work until the group of local leaders voted to end the work stoppage, according to the Detroit Free Press, citing three people familiar with the union’s thinking. However, two UAW local leaders who are on the council told the Free Press that even after the vote, workers could stay on strike until membership ratification.


Usually, once a tentative agreement is reached workers head back on the job while the ratification vote happens in the coming weeks.

"They're still talking," United Auto Workers union spokesman Brian Rothenberg said.

Talks continued on Monday are expected to resume on Tuesday.