GM Ratifies, Talks With FCA Begin

An employee at the Windsor Assembly Plant, May 6 2016. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

Now that unionized workers at General Motors have ratified their new contract, Unifor sets its sights on Fiat-Chrysler.

Talks with the automaker that owns and operates the Windsor Assembly Plant start Monday. The two sides will use the contract with General Motors as a template for their negotiations. Once the deal with Fiat-Chrysler is ratified, the union will move on to the final automaker of the Big 3, Ford Canada.

At General Motors, 4,000 workers at plants in Oshawa, St.Catherines and Woodstock ratified the deal by 64.7% overall.

“The gains made in this agreement are historic,” says Unifor National President Jerry Dias.

The deal provides $554-million in investment in Canadian plants providing the plant in Oshawa with new product. It converts 700 temporary positions to permanent full-time status. Over the life of the contract, workers will receive a 4% wage increase and a lump sum total of $12,000 over four years. There’s also a signing bonus of $6,000. A release from the union also says the agreement provides for an improved new hire program.