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GM lays off 2,000 workers after union gives ultimatum

United Auto Workers picketing outside outside a Stellantis factory in Toledo, Ohio The Associated Press/Photo by Isaac Ritchey/The Blade

GM lays off 2,000 workers after union gives ultimatum

General Motors said Wednesday it laid off about 2,000 workers from its factory in Fairfax, Kan., due to the United Auto Workers union strikes. Stellantis laid off nearly 70 workers in Ohio and said another 300 could follow in Indiana. The layoffs came days after UAW President Shawn Fain said more workers would go on strike by noon Friday without serious progress in contract negotiations. Ford began temporary layoffs last Friday, dismissing 600 non-striking workers. The UAW’s ultimatum marks a week since workers first stopped work at specific individual factories instead of staging a full walkout at the top three U.S. automakers.

How is having some workers strike more effective than all workers striking? UAW leaders say targeting factories keeps companies guessing and builds economic leverage against automakers the longer they hold out. So far, union members walked out of a General Motors plant in Wentzville, Mo., a Ford plant in Wayne, Mich., and a Stellantis plant in Toledo, Ohio. Unions seek wage increases, better pensions, and a 32-hour work week.

Dig deeper: Read Lynn Vincent’s report in WORLD Magazine on the law protecting unionists from paying dues on religious grounds.

Christina Grube

Christina Grube is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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