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automakers UAW Ratifies Historic 4½-Year Pact with Detroit’s Big Three Automakers

UAW Members Approve 4½ Year Contract With Detroit’s Big Three The United Automobile Workers (UAW) have unanimously approved a 4½ year contract with Detroit’s Big Three automakers – General Motors, Ford, and Fiat Chrysler. The new contract, covering some 48,000 hourly-paid workers, took effect on November 5, 2019. The agreement has been the subject of intense negotiation between the union and automakers. It includes an overall 3% wage increase and two annual 3% lump-sum payments to employees. Higher-paid workers will receive an improved defined-benefit pension formula, while entry-level employees will receive modest increases in wages and other compensation. The new contract also provides for improved job protection and stricter enforcement of existing job classifications. It requires the automakers to maintain competitive pensions for their workers and to make further investments in U.S. facilities, including in educational and medical training centers. Additionally, the contract provides for improved medical coverage for hourly employees. The new agreement comes following a series of strikes at major factories, which saw UAW workers walk out and picket lines form in protest of the alleged poor pay and working conditions offered by the automakers. The UAW had accused GM of “unbridled greed” and Fiat Chrysler of “decades of broken promises”, but ultimately the union was successful in negotiating a contract that it believes is fair for its members. This agreement represents a major victory for the UAW and its workers, and is viewed as a demonstration of the union’s ongoing commitment to protecting and advancing the interests of American labor. With the agreement now ratified, Detroit’s Big Three automakers are poised to become even more competitive in the global market. In addition, the terms of the agreement are likely to have a favorable impact on other workers in the same industry. Overall, this resolution achieved by the UAW is a positive step forward for all parties involved. The success of the negotiations should serve as an encouragement to other labor unions who are engaged in talks with large employers. Although compromise entailed on both sides along the way, ultimately the UAW was able to secure a contract that improves wages and the job security of tens of thousands of American workers.