A day after striking at Sterling Heights Stellantis plant, UAW expands to Arlington GM site

By: - October 24, 2023 5:21 pm

Members of the UAW picket line in Delta Township, Michigan on Sept. 29, 2023. (Photo by Anna Liz Nichols)

As an escalating workers’ strike heads toward its sixth week, about 5,000 union members at General Motors’ Arlington Assembly in Texas on Tuesday joined the United Auto Workers (UAW) walkout against the Detroit Three.

The UAW described the action as an effort against “General Motors’ largest plant and biggest moneymaker.”

Workers there build the Chevrolet Tahoe and Cadillac Escalade SUVs, among other models. Texas is the second-largest state in America and isn’t considered one of America’s most union-friendly.

“Another record quarter; another record year. As we’ve said for months: record profits  equal record contracts.” said UAW President Shawn Fain. “It’s time GM workers, and the whole working class, get their fair share.”

The latest strike site comes after about 6,800 United Auto Workers (UAW) members at Stellantis’ Sterling Heights Assembly Plant took to the picket line on Monday.

Fain detailed during a Friday livestream the current proposals at General Motors, Ford and Stellantis, highlighting the shortcomings of the latter’s current offer. All three of the Detroit automakers have offered 23% wage increases and have agreed to eliminate wage tiers, Fain said in recent days.

General Motors said it was “disappointed by the escalation of this unnecessary and irresponsible strike.”

“Last week, we provided a comprehensive offer to the UAW that increased the already substantial and historic offers we have made by approximately 25% in total value. It is time for us to finish this process, get our team members back to work and get on with the business of making GM the company that will win and provide great jobs in the U.S. for our people for decades to come,” the company said in a statement.

The picket at Arlington Assembly brings the total number of UAW members on strike at the Big Three automakers to more than 45,000.

The strike began on Sept. 15 with a walkout against three assembly plants in Michigan, Missouri and Ohio. It has since grown to include eight assembly plants and 38 parts distribution centers in 22 states.

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Ken Coleman
Ken Coleman

Ken Coleman writes about Southeast Michigan, history and civil rights. He is a former Michigan Chronicle senior editor and served as the American Black Journal segment host on Detroit Public Television. He has written and published four books on Black life in Detroit.