• May 5, 2008
Local UAW contract negotiations aren't going well for General Motors, and today they took a turn for the worst as union members at the automaker's Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas walked off the job at 10AM EST. The bulk of GM's hot-selling Chevy Malibu are produced at the Fairfax plant, with a lesser number of the four-door sedan being built at the automaker's Orion plant in suburban Detroit. Last month GM sold 17,050 Malibus, a 39.5% increase in volume over April 2007. The local union in Fairfax had given GM a number of ultimatums, extending them since the first was established for April 22nd. We're not exactly sure what issue is at the heart of these contract negotiations, but The Detroit News reports that at least one bone of contention is the plant requesting seniority to snag transfer jobs, while the other issues remain undisclosed.
General Motors has been able to weather a 10-week strike by union members against American Axle, one of its main suppliers, as only production of large trucks and SUVs have been affected. Another strike at its Lansing Delta Township plant where the large Lambda CUVs are built has also only served to reduce inventories of vehicles that are seeing a slow down in sales. While the General can withstand a reduction of inventory for vehicles that currently aren't selling as well as they were before because of high gas prices and a slump in the housing market, the Malibu is gaining popularity with consumers month over month. The Fairfax and Orion plants were already producing at capacity to keep up with demand, so today's strike will assuredly hurt the automaker where it matters most: the bottom line. We'd expect GM to act quickly to end the strike, as money is being lost by the hour while Malibus aren't being built.

[Source: The Detroit News]


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  • 40 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      WTF? What is the reason for the strike..I haven't seen that yet and therefore no rational comment can be made.
      With 57 comments, who reads all the BS?
      • 6 Years Ago
      American unions still live in the dark ages. They don't know yet that a global economy exists now. They still think they can demand high wages and job protection. The only job protection that exists is doing your job better than anyone else. FACE IT UAW. BTW, UAW means U Ain't Workin' LOL
      • 6 Years Ago
      The time has come for GM to build each model in two plants, one domestic, one foriegn. In the event of a strike add a shift at the foreign plant.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I dunno about that one. Half your labor is insanely expensive, half your vehicles are built with expensive foreign currency and need to be imported, and you need double the tooling and other startup costs. Nothing wrong with having a backup, but simplicity is key.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Good job jackasses. I can't trade in my H2 for a new one because there is no inventory, so I just returned from the Honda dealer and bought a 2008 Honda Civic for good gas mileage. I will probably sell the H2 now because I am sick of you pathetic losers and your strikes. Oh, the Honda dealer has plenty of inventory as well and are selling plenty. In case you never read my posts, I have many years in the union (between 12-15) and am now self employed, which is why I can buy overpriced vehicles like the H2, but I think its time to drop you guys and move on.

      GM, enough is enough, kick these babies to the curb and get on with it because the consumer already has.
        • 6 Years Ago
        That's exactly why the big 3 are going under. People don't want to put up with all their stupid crap. I used to think that people were going to the jap companies because of the percieved quality, turns out their just fed up with all the union crap causing the compaines to fail
      • 6 Years Ago

      All these strikes give the imports an unfair advantage.
        • 6 Years Ago
        No, it's a fair advantage.
        • 6 Years Ago
        This really is a pretty bad time for the unions to strike...those high gas prices finally have the Malibu selling decently, and the unions strike the Malibu plant?

        GM is getting screwed here.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Its time to bring in strikebreakers!
      • 6 Years Ago
      The best thing that anyone can do for UAW is to offer all members complimentary history lessons on auto industry in Great Britain and the noticeable parallels with the union movement in the United States.
        • 6 Years Ago
        In absolute agreement with you on this course of action.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The American public is getting fed up with these union antics. Here we are in a recession, fighting all of Asia for auto sales, employment is dropping AND the UAW strikes one of the bright spots in the U.S. economy.
      Thanks for being patriots, guys.
      • 6 Years Ago
      GM should ramp production of its main products as high as possible. Run the plant at 100% capacity and build huge inventories.

      Then shut the plants down, truck all the machinery to Southern States in new plants in a huge D-Day like invasion. Heck, build the plant buildings and just move in the machinery, paint shop etc... I am sure the Southern Statesw will throw in some incentives that would basically make the move almost cost-free to GM.

      While the plants are being assembles, GM will have about 150 days of inventory to sell-off before new production begin. Offer some retired UAW workers, part-time jobs as consultants to help the new work force get up to speed in auto assembly.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Does the UAW apply to non american car workers?

      If not, I can see why they have cars built over the border because Unions are seriously stupid and they need to stop crying over themselves. go get a different job or just be happy you have one. I hope they don't get paid while on strike
      • 6 Years Ago
      I am a union member (retired), but I just don't understand the way the UAW targets their strikes.

      Their "bread and butter" is the auto industry, yet they target GM's "one of few" models that's turning into a successful product, as sales show?

      Sure, hitting the Malibu production will certainly get quick results, but it sure won't endear "labor" with management at all.

      This, "Them versus us" approach has to be tempered.

      I can only see the UAW making their importance to the industry that much less.

      The result will be that more assembly plants will pop up in the non-union Southern states as Nissan/Hyundai/BMW, and other automakers investing, or it will be Mexico, and then no American labor will benefit.
        • 6 Years Ago
        And a pat on the back to you good sir.
        • 6 Years Ago
        +1 for you. This is the smartest comment I've read all day.
      • 6 Years Ago
      GM should plant someone in the strikers, and have him do something extremely violent in the UAW's name (e.g. toss live hand grenades at the plant).

      Then take the UAW to court and have them declared a terrorist organization.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Just adding: if GM were smart, they'd have sleeper agents in the UAW for years, just waiting to turn a strike into a violent riot. Then GM would have no trouble proving in a court of law that he was a long-time UAW member.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Enjoying being a retard much?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Unions already have a reputation for being involved in organized crime and violence.
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