Two more SUV plants – the GM Lansing Delta Township Assembly and Ford’s Chicago assembly plant – have been added to the UAW’s list of strike targets as negotiations continue between the UAW and the Big 3 Automakers.
Union President Shawn Fain made the announcement during a Facebook Live event Friday morning.
Fain said Friday Stellantis was spared an additional target, citing some progress in negotiations.
The Delta Township plant makes the Buick Enclave and the Chevy Traverse. The plant has more than 2,800 employees, which includes non-bargaining-unit salary workers, according to The Detroit News.
On its website, Ford shows Chicago Assembly builds the Ford Explorer, a police utility vehicle and the the Lincoln Aviator. It has 5,700 hourly workers.
The UAW launched its strike Sept. 15 when 12,700 autoworkers halted work at Big Three assembly plants in Michigan, Missouri and Ohio. A week later, an additional 5,600 workers at 38 GM and Stellantis-owned parts distribution centers in 20 states walked off the job.
No additional Ford targets were included at that point. Fain said at the time the sides were making progress on wage, job security and other issues.
“Negotiations continue,” Ford said in a statement, according to CBS News. “Our focus remains on working diligently with the UAW to reach a deal that rewards our workforce and enables Ford to invest in a vibrant and growing future.”
Among the UAW’s demands: A 36% pay increase across a four-year contract, annual cost-of-living adjustments, pension benefits for all employees, greater job security, restrictions on the use of temporary workers and a four-day work week. Thehe union also wants the automakers to eliminate a two-tiered wage system adopted at the companies after the 2008 financial crisis.
The automakers have said they’ve made reasonable offers, while arguing that the UAW’s wage and other demands would make it hard to compete with other car manufacturers.
Union leaders counter that the Big Three reaped hefty profits as car prices jumped during the pandemic, while workers failed to enjoy the same benefits.
Talks between the UAW and automakers are still active. GM met with the union on Thursday, and Stellantis submitted its latest counteroffer to the union on Thursday, according to Reuters.
Striking workers are receiving pay through an $825 million fund set up by the UAW.