GM UNIT Communication Report

April 22nd  2017


Membership Communication – GM St. Catharines Members – Unifor Local 199


The Company has informed the Union they will be recalling the 16 members back as soon as is practicable starting next week. This will also give them the opportunity to use TPTs for time off.

The Union will be in communication with the Company on manpower needs going forward and we are working towards hiring in the late fall time frame. If things continue to improve in the HFV6 and remain stable in the GF6, the Company will be in a great position to hire later this year.

Note: If there is a shift reduction in the GF6 and a delay in the return of the 3rd shift in HFV6, the Company will continue to use retirements to help mitigate layoffs. Approximately 100 people have retired this year and that alone prevented 100 junior members going to layoff.



Information from General Motors: 

  • The Local Leadership now has a plan to cancel intended layoffs before shutdown by greatly increasing inventory in the short term. As previously stated, the Company will then use the excess inventory to cover the projected volume increases in the 3rd quarter to reduce the inventory.

UNIFOR’s position:

  • Although we were certainly pleased to hear the Company will be cancelling any anticipated layoffs prior to shutdown, forecast volumes although profoundly higher, still remain to some extent below the 2016 production levels according to the latest estimates.

With the new GMC Acadia and BUICK Enclave coming on line after shutdown, the anticipation depending on sales will increase demand for the HFV6.  We will continue to monitor this very closely.



Information from General Motors:

  • The Local Leadership and Carolyn Watts in particular, is working on a plan to find more volume for the GF6 to maintain the 3rd shift. GM continues to state that a shift reduction would be “temporary”, if there is one with the shift returning at an unspecified later date.

UNIFOR’s position:

The Local Leadership is encouraged to have the Plant Manager involved in seeking volume. That said, we will continue to support our brothers and sisters at Cami as their success would have a long term effect on our facility.

Please Note: Trevor Longpre Cell: 905-658-7034. Office: 4020 will be replacing Larry Burkley for the remainder of the term.



Information from General Motors:

The company reaffirmed its announcements that the GEN 5 is in good shape and schedules remain strong into the foreseeable future.

The new work in the GEN 5 is on track

UNIFOR’s position:

We are pleased to see money being invested in our facility with strong demand in the GEN 5 and will continue to seek more opportunities in this area.

We are working to find solutions to the impact market conditions have on our facility and our members. We are again taking a very cautious approach keeping in mind the nature of the business and the future demands for our products.



Brian Bell is replacing Jeff Read as late shift for the remainder of the term.

Taylor Dempster will be replacing Jason Copeland May1st for the remainder of term.


GM/UNIFOR Representation:

Executive Board Trustee:

Article 9, section 5,  “In the event any Executive Board position becomes vacant, subject to the approval of the membership, the President has the authority to appoint a temporary replacement Local Union Officer/Executive board members for a period of no longer than one year, until an election is held.”

Article 13, section 24 states “by-elections can be held on the day of a membership meeting at the union hall.”

HALL VOTE:           By-election for Trustee will be held at the union hall at the next membership meeting (May 17th).  Run-off election, if necessary, will be held at the union hall at the June 21st membership meeting

In Plant Representation at GM:

Article 10, section 4 refers to stewards and committee persons and states if there is a vacancy, a new steward must be (elected) or (appointed by the unit chairperson) unless there is an alternate available.

  1. The Executive board must recognise the autonomy of the Bargaining Unit as long as the appointment or election is consistent with the local union bylaws and constitution.
  1. The Unit Chair may appoint a member to fill the opening or move the alternate into this position.

All matters related to the constitution and bylaws have been referred to Rick Garant at the National office in Toronto for legal advice.


Issued by,


Tim McKinnon, GM Unit Chairperson
On behalf of the Bargaining Committee
Brian Chemnitz, Paul Dortono, Doug Wark, Trevor Longpre, John Rakich
UNIFOR Local 199