by Will Kessler
The United Auto Workers (UAW) union authorized a strike on Friday in negotiations with major automakers, according to the union.
The union voted 97% in favor of a strike for its 150,000 autoworkers as negotiations continue with the Big Three automakers, which include Ford, General Motors and Stellantis, according to a union press release. The union is demanding wage increases to counter inflation, defined benefit pensions, retiree healthcare, the elimination of tiers for wages and benefits among other demands.
“UAW President Shawn Fain announced today that the union’s strike authorization vote passed with near universal approval from the 150,000 union workers at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis,” the union said in a press release. “Final votes are still being tabulated, but the current combined average across the Big Three was 97% in favor of strike authorization. The vote does not guarantee a strike will be called, only that the union has the right to call a strike if the Big Three refuse to reach a fair deal.”
The votes are in, and the results are astounding: 97% of Big Three members voted YES to authorize a strike if the automakers don’t give us a fair deal.
— UAW (@UAW) August 25, 2023
The vote is part of negotiations with the Big Three over the union workers’ contracts, which are all set to expire on Sept. 14. The estimated economic loss that could occur over just 10 days of a total strike was calculated to be $5.6 billion, with a total of $859 million in wages lost to union workers.
“Our union’s membership is clearly fed up with living paycheck-to-paycheck while the corporate elite and billionaire class continue to make out like bandits,” Fain said in the press release. “The Big Three have been breaking the bank while we have been breaking our backs.”
The authorization consisted of three different votes for each major auto company, with Ford being 98%, General Motors being 96%, and Stellantis being 95% in favor of a strike authorization.
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Will Kessler is a reporter at Daily Caller News Foundation.
Photo “UAW Workers” by UAW.