Members of the UAW working at General Motors Co. (GM) voted by two-to-one to ratify a new four-year collective bargaining agreement with the company. The two sides had reached a tentative agreement Sept. 16.
The contract will create 6,400 new jobs in the United States, provide jobs for UAW members who have been laid off over the past several years and bring work back to the United States and to UAW GM plants that had been moved to Mexico and other parts of the world. The 6,400 GM jobs mean another 57,600 jobs will be created in suppliers and other businesses related to the auto industry, since auto manufacturing jobs create and support so many other jobs.
“The UAW and GM entered into this set of bargaining as America struggles with record levels of unemployment and an economy that shows little sign of improvement,” said UAW President Bob King.
Because of President Obama’s and the American taxpayers’ backing of our jobs and our companies, we were determined to work together with GM management to grow jobs in the U.S. and to get more Americans back to work and we are doing just that.
The contract provides significant gains for entry-level workers, bringing wages to $19.28 over the term of the agreement. It also improves profit sharing, replacing the old plan with a new, more simple and transparent plan, with higher payouts in profit sharing.
UAW Vice President Joe Ashton, who directs the union’s GM Department, said:
In these uncertain economic times, we were able to win an agreement with GM that guarantees good American jobs at a good American company. When GM was down, our members sacrificed and saved GM. Now that GM is posting strong profits, our members, as a result of this agreement, are going to share in the company’s success.
The new four-year contract is effective immediately and covers more than 48,000 employees at GM.