Autoworkers at the Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan, have overwhelmingly voted in favor of a tentative contract agreement reached with Ford. The members of Local 900 voted 82% in favor of the deal. Out of the 3,780 workers who cast their votes, 3,097 were in favor and 683 were against the contract.
The four-year-and-eight-month agreement received strong support from both production workers and skilled trades workers, with 81% and 90% in favor respectively. The voting process for Ford's 57,000 union members will continue until November 17.
The strike at the assembly plant began on September 15 after the expiration of the union's contract with Ford. However, the union and the company reached a tentative agreement on October 25, ending the strike.
Following this positive outcome, local union leaders at Stellantis, the parent company of Jeep, voted unanimously to send the contract to their members for a vote. General Motors' local leaders will convene on Friday to discuss their voting plans.
Marick Masters, a business professor at Wayne State University in Detroit who closely follows labor issues, sees the overwhelming support for the contract at the Ford factory as a promising development for the union.
Union Workers Express High Levels of Approval for Contract
Union workers represented by the UAW have expressed their overwhelming approval for the recent contracts negotiated with three major automobile companies. According to industry expert, John Masters, the positive response from workers indicates a broader sentiment within the workforce regarding the new agreement.
While union officials still need to present their cases to the membership, this early feedback appears to be a positive sign. The deals offered by all three companies are largely similar, although there are some variations. One key highlight is the provision for a 25% general pay raise for all workers, with an initial 11% increase upon ratification. Additionally, the inclusion of cost of living pay will result in overall raises exceeding 30% by the conclusion of the contracts on April 30, 2028.
Workers hired after 2009, who do not have defined benefit pensions, will benefit from a 10% annual company contribution to their 401(k) plans. Furthermore, these workers will receive a $5,000 ratification bonus.
The strikes initiated by workers began with targeted walkouts at all three automakers and subsequently escalated over a six-week period in an effort to exert pressure on the companies. GM was the final company to settle, reaching an agreement in the early hours of Sunday morning.
At its peak, the strike involved approximately 46,000 union members across eight assembly plants and 38 parts warehouses nationwide. The UAW represents a total of around 146,000 members across all three Detroit auto companies.