United Auto Workers leaders on Saturday detailed the union’s tentative agreement with General Motors, the last of the Detroit-Three automakers to reach a deal.
According to the UAW’s announcement, General Motors employees will receive a 27% raise over the next four years, assuming the deal is ratified by union members. Additionally, the contract promises to re-implement cost-of-living adjustments, accelerate paths to top wages for new hires, and improve the pipeline from temporary to permanent work. The deal will also allow staff at upcoming electric vehicle battery plants to join the United Auto Workers union, a critical goal of the organization as it looks to protect manufacturing jobs in the wake of automotive electrification.
As part of its new commitments, General Motors is additionally planning to invest $13 billion into its U.S. plants over the length of its agreement with the union. The cash will allow GM facilities to build more ICE cars and retool existing production lines to support electric vehicle manufacturing. While the automaker has yet to explain where the majority of these funds are to be distributed, it has confirmed investments of $1.25 billion, $2 billion, and $4 billion for its Orion Assembly plant, Spring Hill Manufacturing plant a,nd Lansing Grand River Assembly plant, respectively. By securing future projects for existing factories, United Auto Workers leaders will be better able to protect jobs as well as the union’s future. Many OEM facilities built over the last decade are located in southern states, where right-to-work laws make it difficult for organized labor to gain a foothold.
While there is still a possibility, however slight, that UAW members may choose to vote against their deal with General Motors, union president Shawn Fain has spoken positively of the new contracts. During a video livestream, the United Auto Workers chief underlined the significance of each of the Detroit-Three agreements. “We were able to wrench back so much of what these companies have stolen from us over the past few decades,” he commented. “We won back billions in contract gains. We won back our dignity as autoworkers. We won back our pride in being UAW.”