Unifor, Canada’s largest union in the private sector, and General Motors (GM) have reached a tentative agreement following a brief strike at the automaker’s facilities in the country.
According to Unifor, the strike actions which began early Tuesday at GM’s Oshawa Assembly Plant, St. Catharines Powertrain Plant and Woodstock Parts Distribution Centre were on hold to allow the membership to vote on the tentative agreement, reports Xinhua news agency.
The deal follows the pattern agreement Unifor reached with Ford Motor Company last month.
The pattern agreement includes base hourly wage increases of nearly 20 per cent for production workers and 25 per cent for those in skilled trades over the lifetime of the three-year agreement.
“When faced with the shutdown of these key facilities General Motors had no choice but to get serious at the table and agree to the pattern,” said Unifor National President Lana Payne.
“The solidarity of our members has led to a comprehensive tentative agreement that follows the pattern set at Ford Motor Company to the letter, including all items that company had initial fought us on such as pensions, retiree income supports and converting full-time temporary workers into permanent employees over the life of the agreement,” Payne said.
“All members will benefit now that the pattern is in place at GM, whether they’re temporary workers, new hires, or already at the top of the pay scale,” said Unifor Ford Master Bargaining Chair Jason Gale, adding that this agreement delivers the kind of historic pay increases and significant pension improvements.
The new tentative agreement covers almost 4,300 autoworkers at Unifor and details of the agreement, including local and facility-specific information, will be made available to members prior to ratification votes, Unifor said.
Unifor represents some 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy, including about 18,000 workers at the Canadian facilities of the Detroit Big Three — GM, Ford and Chrysler parent Stellantis.