Unifor will negotiate with GM first

Today Jerry Dias announced that the target company Unifor will negotiate with first will be General Motors. This is the announcement we have all been waiting for and the St Catharines Bargaining Committee agree with and supports Brother Dias decision 100%, without a doubt GM is the right choice.

To reach an agreement we expect General Motors to invest in Canada. Which means we will have new work for our Canadian plants including St Catharines before an agreement is signed. Over the next two weeks the focus will be to negotiate an agreement with General Motors that will addresses the needs of our members and secure the future of our Canadian facilities.

The GM plant in St Catharines efficiently builds 1,350 transmissions and 2,600 engines every day. Which results in over 3,000 good paying direct jobs in the Niagara region as well as thousands of spin off jobs in the community. In 2015, Niagara Region Autoworkers paid $41 million dollars in income payroll and sales taxes that supports services the entire community depends upon. Your pay cheques contributed $169 million to the Niagara Economy (that’s $463,000 per day) these good paying jobs benefit not only our members but also the entire country and are worth fighting for.

Looking to the future we need an agreement that provides our seniority workers an opportunity to retire, secure new investment which will create employment opportunities for a new generation of Autoworkers in Canada.

On September 19th at midnight our contract will expire and we will be in a legal position to call a strike action however it is important you understand an agreement can be made by then. Both the National Union, the Local bargaining committee and GM will be working very hard to reach an agreement, we will keep you informed with regular updates.

What can you do? To show the bargaining committee your support we ask that you keep working producing high quality engines and transmission and let us focus on negotiating an FAIR contract.

On behalf of the Bargaining Committee I would like to thank our members for their continued support.

Tim McKinnon