Three major US automobile manufacturers have improved their Salary offers for the next collective agreement, but they are not enough to prevent a major strike in the country’s auto industry. This was warned of by the United Auto Workers (UAW) union, which warned of the huge discrepancy between the offers from Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis and the demands of workers. Tesla remains on the sidelines because the UAW union is not represented on the works council.
The company that has increased its salary offer the most is Stellantis, a Chrysler company, which has offered the UAW a 14.5% raise for four years, although without considering additional pay for the entire period.
Offers from GM, Ford and Stellantis
In negotiations, GM has offered a 10% wage increase and two additional 3% lump-sum payments over four years. Ford’s offer is similar and includes a 10% salary increase through 2027 and balloon payments of 6%. Additionally, Stellantis is offering $10,500 in inflation protection payments over four years, while GM is offering $11,000 and Ford is offering $12,000.
These deals would increase the minimum wage for temporary workers to $20 per hour ($4.22 more than before) and shorten the time to reach the maximum wage for regular auto workers from eight to six years.
United Auto Workers President Shawn Fain indicated that the union, which represents 146,000 workers, wants an agreement to avoid the strike, although preparations continue due to insufficient offers. The crucial date is Friday, September 15th, when the validity of the strike ends the collective agreements of the three major US automakers.
The union demands a 46% increase
The 10% and 14.5% increases over four years contrast with the UAW’s demand for a 46% wage increase, including an immediate 20% increase, defined benefit pensions for all workers, 32-hour work weeks, and additional raises on the basis of inflation.
The UAW warned that GM and Ford’s offers would change the profit-sharing calculation formula, so much so that if it had been in effect last year, GM workers would have received 29% less and Ford workers would have received 29% less. 21% less.
In recent weeks, US President Joe Biden has called on the two parties to continue negotiations to prevent the strike. The UAW union obtained an almost unanimous agreement from workers to call a strike if job offers were unsatisfactory.