FCA’s Sterling Heights Michigan Assembly Plant

UAW reaches deals with Stellantis and GM, ending strikes at Big Three

Oct. 30, 2023
In a busy weekend for the UAW, they negotiated a tentative deal with Stellantis, provided details behind the previously reached Ford deal, and started striking at lone holdout GM's engine plant. A deal with GM was reached Oct. 30.

After 45 days, the United Auto Workers' standup strikes at Detroit's Big Three automakers—Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis—are over. In the last week, union leaderships had systematically reached tentative deals, starting with Ford, and concluding with GM on Monday morning.

“Our union is once again victorious,” UAW President Shawn Fain announced in a video to union members. “Once again, we have achieved what just weeks ago we were told was impossible. At Stellantis in particular, we have not only secured a record contract, we have begun to turn the tide in the war on the American working class. And we truly are saving the American dream.”

All of these four-year contracts still need to be ratified by voting members. If rejected, UAW members would return to the picket lines, as was seen with Mack Trucks earlier this month.

On Saturday, Stellantis reached a tentative deal with the United Auto Workers, which closely mirrors the deal the union reached with Ford last Wednesday. Both offer better pay and benefits, as well as the right to strike over proposed plant closures. This allows striking UAW members to immediately return to work assembling Ram trucks and other Stellantis vehicles. Both four-year contracts still need to be ratified by voting members.

In a statement following the news, Stellantis North America Chief Operation Officer Mark Stewart said, “We look forward to welcoming our 43,000 employees back to work and resuming operations to serve our customers and execute our Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan to maintain Stellantis’ position at the forefront of innovation.”

The UAW leveraged the agreements with Ford and Stellantis to reach a favorable deal for UAW members at GM. Over the weekend, the UAW escalated their stand-up strike against the OEM by ordering members to picket at GM’s engine plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee, which supplies powertrain components to nine other factories. This would have impacted production of GM’s profitable mid- and large-sized pickups, as well as several SUVs and Corvettes. Last week, the UAW began to strike at GM’s largest and most profitable assembly plant in Arlington, Texas.

Stellantis-UAW deal details

Here are the details of the pending Stellantis deal:

  • 25% pay raises over contract; 11% wage bump at ratification
  • Cost-of-living-adjustments (COLA) that could increase wages an additional 5%
  • The right to strike over proposed plant closures
  • Faster progression from starting wages to full UAW scale
  • Improved pension and 401(k) benefits

Stellantis also agreed to reopen its Belvidere, Illinois, plant to make a new mid-sized pickup and to build a battery plant there.

“Going into these negotiations, the company was explicit, they wanted to cut 5,000 jobs across Stellantis,” Fain said. “We were looking at a net loss of jobs. We turned it all the way around. By the end of this agreement, Stellantis will be adding 5,000 jobs.”

Ford-UAW deal details

 “UAW members at Ford will receive more in straight general wage over the next four and a half years than we have over the last 22 years combined,” noted UAW Vice President Chuck Browning.

On Oct. 29, Fain went on Facebook Live to lay out the Ford deal to members prior to a vote:

  • 25% general wage increase over the course of this agreement; immediate 11% increase upon ratification
  • All 57,000 UAW members to receive $5,000 ratification bonus
  • 68% starting rate increase
  • 30% top-rate increase
  • 150% raise for temporary works over course of contract
  • Immediate 85% wage increase for lower-tiers at Sterling Axle and Rawsonville plants upon CBA ratification
  • The right to strike over proposed plant closures
  • Better pensions, retirement, and 401k benefits

Ford will also invest $8.1 billion to renovate plants and add the number of models to its lineup.

The details behind the GM  contract were not readily available at time of publication. (This story will be updated when those are released.)

Fain said to members: “No matter what you decide, this contract remains a huge victory. For far too long we were being left behind in an economy that only worked for the billionaire class. This contract is more than just a contract, it’s a call to action to workers everywhere to organize and fight for a better life. Billionaires aren’t going to save the American Dream. Working-class people are saving the American Dream and the UAW is saving the American Dream.”

About the Author

John Hitch | Editor-in-chief, Fleet Maintenance

John Hitch is the editor-in-chief of Fleet Maintenance, where his mission is to provide maintenance management and technicians with the the latest information on the tools and strategies to keep their fleets' commercial vehicles moving.

He is based out of Cleveland, Ohio, and has worked in the B2B journalism space for more than a decade.

Hitch was previously senior editor for FleetOwner, and covers everything related to trucking and commercial vehicle equipment, including breaking news, the latest trends and best practices. He previously wrote about manufacturing and advanced technology for IndustryWeek and New Equipment Digest.

Prior to that he was editor for Kent State University's student magazine, The Burr, and a freelancer for Cleveland Magazine. He is an award-winning journalist and former sonar technician, where he served honorably aboard the fast-attack submarine USS Oklahoma City (SSN-723).