GM workers have uncertain road ahead after plant closures, layoffs announced

Ivan Schwartz
November 29, 2018

(Workers at the Oshawa plant are represented by a Canadian union.) The plants can't be officially closed under the current UAW contract, which will be renegotiated in 2019.

Unifor Local 222 shop chairman Greg Moffatt said Monday the plant is not closing "without the fight of our lives". "They know they're making a great product. but they also realize that the auto is not selling, and, you know, the key is to get another product for this plant".

"We are sick and exhausted of being pushed around". Trudeau is scheduled to meet with executives from GM rival Ford on Parliament Hill Monday afternoon.

She added that the largest U.S. automaker is "taking these actions now while the company and economy are strong, to stay ahead of fast-changing industry and market conditions".

GM expects the actions announced Monday to contribute $6 billion in cash savings by 2020 - $4.5 billion in cost reductions and $1.5 billion in lower capital expenditures.

GM's shares in NY jumped as high as 7.8 per cent to US$38.75, their highest level since July. He said his wife also works at the GM facility and the pair have an 11-month-old at home. It also plans to cut production at two plants in the USA that make transmissions.

"It's hard, it's frightful..." Magna International Inc. reported in its last quarterly results that it had revised estimates for total light vehicle production from North America to 17 million, down half a million vehicles from its estimate at the start of the year. "It's a kick in the nuts". "Oshawa built GM", French added in a tweet.

GM is also closing the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant in Detroit and the Lordstown Assembly in Warren, Ohio in 2019.

The news caught politicians at all levels and of all political stripes completely off guard despite their frequent conversations with the automaker about the plant's future over the past year.

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Outgoing Oshawa Mayor John Henry told CTV Toronto's Miranda Anthistle that he's hoping the plant closure is "just a rumour" because GM is a "huge economic engine to the community".

One potential partner could be Honda Motor Co., which already has r&d relationships with GM for fuel cell and autonomous vehicles. "We think it is appropriate to do it at this time while the company is strong and the economy is strong". "They didn't ask for anything", Ford said.

The Oshawa operation became a talking point for U.S. President Donald Trump during Canada-U.S. trade negotiations, according to a Toronto Star report about an off-the-record aside during an interview with Bloomberg News over the summer. Workers had until November 19 to decide, and they would have to exit by the end of the year.

"We're going to continue to explore all opportunities that allow us to be more efficient with our investments, more efficient with our capital", she said.

GM said it is eliminating several models as it reduces production capacity to focus on battery-powered vehicles.

"We're being disrupted as an industry by companies like Tesla and Uber, and what we're saying is we're going to disrupt them".

"It's very different now than when I was growing up, when everyone you knew was working in the plant", he said.

"Oshawa is building the previous generation trucks that are very helpful in the crossover period".

"The first thing I said to (the president of GM) 'is there anything we can do as a province, absolutely anything, ' and the answer was no, there's nothing".

Other reports by GizPress

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