DETROIT (FOX 2) - The united autoworkers union said it would not expand any strikes Friday after announcing a major breakthrough in negotiations with General Motors at the last minute.
President Shawn Fain said GM would write the UAW into its National Master Agreement as it relates to electric vehicle manufacturing and battery plants.
"We've been told for months this is impossible. We've been told the EV future was a race to the bottom. We called their bluff. This cannot be understated," said Fain.
Fain said the breakthrough came minutes before the UAW was prepared to strike major engine plants owned by GM. The UAW's update is the first to come without a major targeted strike - a sign that labor talks between the Detroit 3 and the union are progressing.
Fain said there was still gaps in wages and cost-of-living-adjustments between the two parties, but both were moving in the right direction.
Wearing an "Eat The Rich" shirt, Fain touted gains its made with Ford, Stellantis, and GM Friday, praising wage increase proposals up to at least 20%, a restoration of COLA protections previously set in 2007 from two of the automakers, and a reduced timeline of reaching full pay status.
"We are making significant progress," Fain said. "In three weeks, we've moved these companies further than anyone thought possible."
The effects from the United Autoworkers Union strike are trickling down into the suppliers, affecting dozens of companies and prompting layoffs from dozens of suppliers and thousands of workers from automaker-owned plants.
But while immediate concerns from the automakers point toward hopes of getting back to building cars and trucks, the union has continually expressed concern about it being left behind as the industry pivots to battery-powered vehicles.
GM's breakthrough Friday, which the UAW said came minutes before Fain's announcement that they would call on workers at one of the companies major engine plants, is the first development that involves battery plants.
Ford previously said the UAW was holding a deal hostage over them.
Where negotiations stand
Fain gave general updates about where things stand on negotiations Friday.
- Ford has offered a 23% wage increase to the UAW. They also agreed to a progression to the highest wage of 3 yearsGM and Stellantis are both around 20% wage increases. Both agreed to a wage progression of 4 years
- GM and Stellantis are both around 20% wage increases. Both agreed to a wage progression of 4 years
- Both Stellantis and Ford have committed to returning to the 2007 cost-of-living-adjustment formula
- GM hasn't yes guaranteed that
- Temporary workers at Ford will make $21 an hour
- GM and Stellantis have agreed to pay temps $20 an hour