By on October 2, 2019

General Motors Renaissance Center

As the GM-UAW strike enters its 17th day, it seems the union representing 48,000 of the automaker’s U.S. workers isn’t about to agree to any concessions.

Earlier this week, the General Motors bargaining team slid an offer across the table, hoping to restore labor peace and flip the switches at its darkened plants. The UAW promptly slid it back.

According to UAW Vice President Terry Dittes, the “comprehensive proposal” floated late Monday night fell far short of what the union’s bargaining team had in mind, claiming it failed to address issues “like health care, wages, temporary employees, skilled trades and job security to name a few.”

Since the outset, the union has repelled any attempt to roll back health insurance coverage while demanding what they see as a fair piece of GM’s loot. At the 11th hour, before pre-strike bargaining talks broke down, the UAW rejected a follow-up proposal after an earlier offer significantly cut back what GM would pay for health coverage.

In his Tuesday letter to members, Dittes said the UAW countered GM’s offer with one of its own.

“We have responded today with a counterproposal and are awaiting GM’s next proposal to the Union. Regardless of what is publicized in print or social media, etc., there are still many important issues that remain unresolved,” Dittes said, alluding to recent media reports that claimed the two sides were drawing close to a deal.

GM has remained tight-lipped on the negotiations and strike, with the last word from the company coming after talks restarted on September 16th. In addition to placing the company’s vast U.S. workforce on $250-per-week strike pay, the walkout has idled some 10,000 workers in Mexico and Canada and left dealers struggling to find replacement parts. Just yesterday, J.P. Morgan estimated the cost to GM at $1 billion.

[Image: General Motors]

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

40 Comments on “GM Offer Gets the Cold Shoulder From UAW...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    health care: Time to join reality, folks. Most people contribute 15-30% of their health care premium costs (or more), not 3%.

    wages: GM will give a little.

    temporary employees: GM can give a little.

    skilled trades: IDK the issue here.

    job security: Not gonna happen. The more the UAW pushes for this, the less secure their jobs will become. BTW, I’m sure GM is formulating Plan B right now, for what future production will look like and where it will be.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Job security would be nice, it used to kinda be a thing throughout most of society ya know – sorta increases stability. Well at least before certain monied folks nuked the economy with GATT. Thanks Bill!

      • 0 avatar

        Don’t forget NAFTA.

      • 0 avatar
        ScarecrowRepair

        Job security only ever existed when the only jobs were all the same — farmers, craftsmen. It wasn’t a think when railroads came in, or steamships, or farm machinery, or cars, or airplanes. The only job security right now, and for decades, is government jobs, because government never shrinks.

        • 0 avatar
          Lorenzo

          Government never shrinks because its “revenue” is always expanding. It always expands because calling the taxpayers’ involuntarily submitted hard-earned income “revenue” separates it from the source in politicians’ minds.

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            Whether I would agree with your comment or not, I don’t that it has any relevance to the question of a labour negotiation between a public company and a trade union.

      • 0 avatar
        Snooder

        Lol. Job security is wishful goddamn thinking.

        Here’s the thing. Even if GM promises not to fire anyone or close down a single plant, what good does that do if GM goes bankrupt trying to keep everybody’s job ‘secure’?

    • 0 avatar

      Yeah 3% is low even most Govt employees are in double digits. Most jobs from my experience are down to covering 50% and sometimes less of healthcare costs.
      Temp employees seem to be a big sticking point and I think is on it’s way to becoming a national issue in general after rulings in CA etc.
      Job Security, man that would be nice but modern manufacturing makes that problematic.

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      It must borne in mind that GM negotiators are in something of a conflict of interest. Whatever the union gets will later be extended to salaried staff, and anything the union gives up is available to be taken away from salaried staff.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        “Whatever the union gets will later be extended to salaried staff”

        -Unless GM operates differently than every other company with a labor union, this is manifestly untrue.

        • 0 avatar
          mikey

          @jack4x…No… ect nailed it .

          I worked closely with salary people . The first question I’d hear after every ratification meeting ..”What did you guys get. ? “

          • 0 avatar
            jack4x

            Must be an autoworker thing.

            When I was a salaried engineer in the steel industry the USW benefits package was much different (and much more generous) than ours.

            I’ve heard the same in other industries as well.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            Happens like that in government, as well. Not guaranteed, but mostly, the same perks are extended to management as the people in bargaining-units.

    • 0 avatar
      Cactuar

      When you live above your means you get a panic attack if you even think about losing your job. Job security becomes a real issue.

      If people had a year’s worth of expenses in the form of an emergency fund, job security wouldn’t be such a big deal. Stop spending everything you make and, especially, stop relying on your employer to finance your wasteful lifestyle.

      • 0 avatar

        While I’m sure more people could be saving, it’s not that easy in the lower middle and underclass. Depending on where you live rent alone might eat up half your paycheck for the cheapest place around. Add in unknown costs of medical plus costs of COBRA from losing a job. There is plenty of reason to stress for most people. Saving a year salary might take 5-10 years in a low level position.

      • 0 avatar

        Government will never allow savings to take priority over spending. It keeps interest rates artificially low to promote consumerism. Fed pumps economy with cheap money which are not backed with anything, essentially pumping worthless paper. In the end there will be nasty surprise – study the causes and history of Great Depression.

  • avatar

    The strike is good news for the CT6-V, which is really GM’s only decent car after the corvette.

  • avatar
    blockmachining

    The UAW should be labeled as a Domestic Terrorist Organization. The number of jobs that they have cost Americans for their selfish goals are unreal.

    • 0 avatar

      Barra is the real villain here. She has helped weaken American manufacturing by her serial outsourcing.

    • 0 avatar
      Ravage

      blockmachining

      See it’s narcissistic people like yourselves that know nothing of why we are standing up for this fight we have long term temps that don’t get the same benefits we get and NO pathway to permanent FT work in progression employees that make far less than traditional employee and a week less of vacation. Traditional employees gave up 2 dollars on the hr back in 07-08 during the bankruptcy and never seen a raise for 11 years yet cost of living has went up dramatically. The media and GM will put out propaganda to make it look like we are greedy when they have taken and taken and we have sacrificed our own livelihoods to see the company succeed and prosper. Now GM is taking in record profits and we want what we deserve and what is fair. So until you know the truth please don’t speak on something you know nothing about there is a lot more than what meets the eye. Better yet maybe you should STOP and talk to some of the ones on the lines and maybe you might just hold a sign with us. Solidarity UAW

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    At what point does GM move all production to China?

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      With tariffs causing manufacturers to leave China in droves, that’s not a viable option anymore.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      I was wondering the same. They clearly don’t want to manufacture in the US. Since their market share continues to shrink, the feeling appears mutual.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      Gone out of business or move elsewhere. That shoulda been done in 2009. Who didn’t see this coming, after Bailouts, Handouts and Nationalization to keep the UAW employed for putting their guy in the White House?

      Maybe both sides in this strike will deplete themselves and go broke.

      Can’t happen too soon for me.

      One good thing, at least by best friend is NOT going to buy a new Silverado. Maybe a Tundra is in his future?

      • 0 avatar

        As much as the union can be a dumb thing at times, Lets not forget that the Unions are kind of what made middle America what it is. Lots of people with decent pay makes a strong economy. There has to be a balance there somewhere.

        • 0 avatar
          SCE to AUX

          “Lots of people with decent pay makes a strong economy.”

          Sure, but I don’t need a union for that.

          There is such a thing as job mobility to secure a better deal elsewhere, and the internet to air your grievances about your employer, and labor laws which regulate a safe workplace.

          The transplants offer decent pay, good benefits, and a safe work environment, and that’s how they keep the unions out.

          • 0 avatar

            I would argue the transplants largely do that to avoid the unions. Not sure pay would be so good without the unions. There have been studies done on it basically with the merging of multiple companies and lack of union, pay goes down in a geographic region. You can argue for moving but that get’s complicated in it’s own right.

            Long and short, Unions have a roll to play but they need to be updated to match reality.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            SCE to AUX, I hope the transplants will continue to keep the unions out. But I fear that with the next ‘crat administration, whenever that will be, one of the planks will be unionizing automakers in the South.

            If the ‘crats want the union votes they have to act as a mouthpiece for the organized labor movement.

            That’s how President Trump got elected, by promising to bring jobs, union jobs, back to America. And the unions turned out en masse to vote for him.

        • 0 avatar
          MorrisGray

          Mopar… I agree that initially a long time ago the government and the unions were created for the better good to help our people and our nation but they have both become so corrupt we are now suffering from their greed. GM should have been left alone by the Obama regime to fail. It is a natural process and I as a taxpayer don’t owe GM any of my money to stay in business. Our government can no longer get any bills passed thru Congress without doing a favor to someone that has nothing to do with the bill proposition at hand. GREED and it is not good for our society.

      • 0 avatar
        MorrisGray

        HDC… I totally agree. Government Motors should have never received the handout in the first place. We the people are not responsible for poor management and the welfare of a company to stay in business.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          MorrisGray, nevertheless it happened so now it is up to the buying public to vote with their wallet and/or their feet. Spend their hard-earned money any place else but with UAW-made or GM vehicles.

          Ford is a great option instead of GM. Ford is The only American automaker still standing. Ford has problems, yes, but they do make the best everyman’s pickup trucks on the planet.

  • avatar
    MorrisGray

    Maybe Government Motors needs another handout from the taxpayers??
    Any democrats willing to chip in some extra tax dollars?
    Did they pay back the money they got from Obama and team handout?

  • avatar
    dal20402

    When you have a good union, you trust the union negotiators’ decisions, and you can feel pretty sure that if you are on strike then you really needed to strike. That makes it easier to hold out without pay.

    But if you were a UAW member, would you trust the strike call? IMO leadership of this particular union is too corrupt to justify that kind of faith.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      More American workers employed right now. Wages rising because of a worker shortage. Fewer unemployed than there are job openings. Yet the UAW wants even more money, more benefits, more of everything and on top of that they want to be guaranteed a job for life.

      Something is not right here.

      Vote with your wallet. Vote with your feet.

      Buy from a non-union transplant.

      • 0 avatar

        Not knowing what’s inside a UAW members head, but I think their biggest concerns are preventing layoffs and that in the recession they gave up a lot on 2nd tier and temp workers. Now that GM’s been highly profitable they feel those changes should be reversed. I can see the thinking honestly.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          I think you are right. Layoffs and job insecurity must be a huge thing to worry about for the UAW right now, what with robotics popping up in more and more factories, plants, and work environments.

          The future looks bleak for auto assembly workers because robots are not temperamental, don’t do drugs or alcohol, don’t smoke marijuana, don’t need lengthy pee/smoke breaks, and robots are tireless, never lazy and never have a bad day. And robots require no costly health insurance.

          But if these UAW people are so unhappy with the pay and benefits, and employee discounts, why don’t they just get another job, elsewhere, in another industry, like banking, investments, medicine, mining, etc?

          My grand daughter started full-time work this summer as a Mining Engineer with a BS degree from UTEP, age 22, starting salary $74K, plus bennies, FREE healthcare with Blue Cross of AZ, THREE weeks paid vacation, pay raises every six months for the first year, with annual pay raises after that, AND the option to buy shares in this public company.

          And I’m guessing much of the work she does in the Open Pit Mining field is more strenuous than that of auto assembly workers. I know I couldn’t do it today.

          Then again, no commitments. Employees are free to quit anytime they’re unhappy.

          Ditto UAW workers. Free to quit!

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    What happened to the old Charles “Engine” Wilson’s dictum:

    What is good for GM is good for America?

Read all comments

Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • thx_zetec: No wipers, no mirrors, rear visibility that makes you wish for a camaro, and a windshield almost flat for...
  • Peter Gazis: thelaine The Japanese have had every advantage – lower labor costs -New factories built after WWII...
  • dal20402: Given the way the full-size truck market is going I suppose I’ll probably be able to buy one at my...
  • MBella: Electronic controls made cars simpler. That’s one of the main reasons reliability improved so much...
  • FThorn: Agreed. The 392 is very impressive. I drove it hard around Road America, and I was impressed. Tick down from...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributors

  • Timothy Cain, Canada
  • Matthew Guy, Canada
  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States
  • Mark Baruth, United States