The new president of the United Auto Workers says union members already have a list of demands for upcoming contract talks with Detroit’s “Big 3.”
The UAW opens national contract negotiations this summer, and new union president Shawn Fain told the Automotive Press Association he wants to have a good working relationship with automakers.
But Fain argues the union has not received a fair share of the money car companies made since the government bailed them out in 2009.
“I want to work with the companies. I want to have a good relationship,” Fain said. “But if they’re not going to treat our members with respect and not give them their due, then we’re going to have issues.”
He says UAW members want to restore cost-of-living pay raises and pensions back to previous levels, ensure equal wages for workers doing similar jobs regardless of seniority, and guarantee that automakers won’t avoid unions while creating new electric vehicle facilities.
Fain notes that Ford, General Motors and Stellantis are all building electric battery factories as joint ventures with other companies, but only GM is ready to have the union bargain for workers at one of the plants.
“They can’t form joint ventures with the intents and purpose also of circumventing the commitment to our members and to agreements,” argues Fain.