UAW Warns It Will Expand Strikes If No Serious Progress Is Made by Friday

The United Auto Workers said more of its members will go on strike at General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Stellantis NV facilities starting at noon Friday unless substantial headway is made toward new labor contracts.

(Bloomberg) — The United Auto Workers said more of its members will go on strike at General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Stellantis NV facilities starting at noon Friday unless substantial headway is made toward new labor contracts.

“Either the Big Three get down to business and work with us to make progress in negotiations, or more locals will be called on to stand up and go out on strike,” UAW President Shawn Fain said in a video released late Monday. 

Ford said Monday night that it was developing contingency plans for further work stoppages, “including plans to ship the parts that keep Ford vehicles on the road.”

The new deadline raises the stakes for talks between three of the biggest automakers in the US and the union representing 146,000 of their workers. Friday will mark one week since the UAW called its first-ever walkout across all three of the legacy Detroit manufacturers, which is costing the companies output of about 3,200 vehicles a day, according to S&P Global Mobility.

A union representative said earlier that no new offers had come from GM, Ford or Stellantis since the union made its latest proposals on Sept. 14, right before its strike began.

In an interview with CNBC Tuesday morning, Stellantis’ North American chief operating officer Mark Stewart said that negotiations are continuing with the union. He also said the company has inventory on hand to offset the strike’s impact. 

In a statement Monday, Stellantis said it was offering raises of almost 21% and was committed to finding a solution for its idled Jeep plant in Belvidere, Illinois. Over the weekend, the company’s top negotiator said the Belvidere plant proposal was no longer on the table after the UAW rejected its last offer before the strike deadline. 

On Sunday, Fain rejected the 21% pay increase offer from Stellantis as a “no-go.”

A bargaining update that Stellantis, the maker of Jeep and Chrysler models, issued Sept. 16 was described in some media reports as a new offer. But the latest proposal on the table was made by the UAW, according to a person familiar with the contract talks, who asked not to be identified revealing internal discussions.

Citing unnamed sources, CNBC reported that Stellantis’ proposal could lead to the closure of 18 facilities, including parts and distribution centers. The automaker’s North American headquarters and technology center in Detroit also could be affected, CNBC said.

Meanwhile, Canadian autoworker union Unifor extended its Monday-night deadline in its own talks with Ford. 

“The union received a substantive offer from the employer minutes before the deadline and bargaining is continuing throughout the night,” according to Unifor’s Facebook post. 

Unlike the UAW strategy of striking all three automakers at once, Unifor, which is negotiating on behalf of 18,000 autoworkers, chose Ford as its “target” company for bargaining. A collective agreement with Ford, once ratified, is likely to set the pattern for contracts with GM and Stellantis.

Read More: UAW’s Bid to Upend the Auto World Began With Bill Ford Snub 

The UAW strikes began Sept. 15, minutes after contracts with the carmakers expired. Almost 13,000 workers walked off jobs at a Ford plant in Michigan making Ranger pickups and Bronco SUVs, a GM factory in Missouri that assembles Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon pickups, and a Stellantis plant in Ohio that builds Jeep Wrangler SUVs and Jeep Gladiator trucks.

GM and Ford have announced layoffs of non-striking workers, citing what they’ve described as spillover effects of walkouts from the three factories. The UAW will pay those workers the equivalent of $500 a week in strike pay, even though they’re not on strike, the person said. The union has about $825 million in its strike fund.

Read More: Big Three Automakers Have Legal Leeway for Laying Off Workers

The UAW has declined to detail its latest offer, but the companies have said the union lowered its demand for a pay raise to 36% from 40%. GM and Ford have each countered with offers for 20% raises, which the union rejected. The latest offer from Stellantis is for a 19.5% raise, which increases to 21% when compounded over the duration of the deal, the person said.

–With assistance from Eduard Gismatullin.

(Updates throughout)

More stories like this are available on

©2023 Bloomberg L.P.