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General Motors opens contract talks with the UAW with plant closings looming large

Posted at 6:14 PM, Jul 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-16 22:43:30-04

DETROIT (WXYZ) — While the traditional ceremonial handshake was underway inside the Ren Cen, outside about 100 workers from GM plants that are closing were protesting.

The word GM used to close the plants when they were announced last November is “unallocated.”

Some signs held by the workers said “allocate Lordstown.” That GM plant closed in March. It still sits empty.

GM is discontinuing production on sedans. The Chevy Cruze was built in Lordstown.

Dan Morgan UAW Local 1211 Shop Chairman said the announcement hit like a punch in the gut.

Ironically, inside GM Chair Mary Barra said union and management created trust with they worked together to same GM in bankruptcy in 2009. She also says both union and management need to work together on vehicles of the future, electric and self-driving.

The UAW says GM is making record profits, the most of the Big 3 and union members have been watching “a race to the bottom” with concessions, outsourcing, use of temporary workers, and jobs shifted to Mexico and other countries.

The talks will be private during the upcoming weeks.

Around Labor Day the UAW could announce a strike target, one of the Big 3 to focus on talks and establish an agreement that would be a pattern for the other two.