Suzuki's plant in Manesar, India builds cars for Australia, specifically its Alto small car. Or at least they were building cars before violent worker riots forced the factory to close. The plant has been idled for five weeks as a result of worker violence that led to the death of one manager and 95 injuries. The riot was spurred over a labor dispute – specifically, a gulf in salaries between temporary workers and their salaried counterparts who earn triple the contract workers' wages.
Seven Colombian men, all former General Motors employees, have sewn their mouths shut as part of a hunger strike that is now in its third week. The demonstrators, stationed outside the U.S. embassy in Bogota, are protesting their termination from the GM Colmotores plant.
Fiat spent much of 2011 jousting with Italian labor unions over contracts and plant security. The matter was finally resolved in December when Fiat signed new labor agreements, but a sign of Fiat's take on the matter was its departure from Confindustria, an Italian business group, over concerns that group labor agreements were crippling international competitiveness. Some recent comments by Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne, though, seem to point the company back to loggerheads with labor.
Costco has been in the car business for years, offering a few vehicles to members at attractive rates. The warehouse chain also sells tires and discounted fuel. Now Costco wants to take its discounting model right to the dealer service bay.
Proving that he is nothing if not predictable, Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich blamed the United Auto Workers for the loss of American manufacturing jobs at a recent campaign appearance. Automotive News reports that Gingrich lauded the BMW factory in Spartanburg, SC, for being "vibrant" and mentioned Honda, Mercedes-Benz and Nissan in a positive light, while blaming the UAW for impeding continuous improvement at domestic automakers. The UAW did not respond to a request for commen
The United Autoworkers Union is struggling – and it is the first to admit it. With its membership dwindling after three decades of workforce cuts by Chrysler, Ford and General Motors, the union has pinned its future on organizing one of the transplants. Efforts to convince workers at Japanese-owned plants, like the Nissan factory in Smyrna, Tennessee, have fallen on deaf ears in the past, but there's now hope that the UAW might succeed at one of the newer German-owned plants.
The United Auto Workers have ratified a new four-year labor agreement with Ford by a two-to-one margin. The deal will see the automaker add 12,000 hourly jobs over the course of the term by bringing some production back into the U.S. from overseas. The agreement will also see Ford invest $16 billion in domestic product development and manufacturing during that time, as well. The automaker says that it will increase production by adding another shift at its Auto Alliance International, Michigan A
Maybe it was the Detroit Tigers decisive win in game three of the American League Championship Series, but something put the United Auto Workers and Chrysler negotiators in the mood to compromise last night. The Detroit News is reporting that the union announced a deal just before 7:00 AM today.
Ford and the United Auto Workers have agreed to a tentative labor agreement, according to Automotive News. The pact makes Ford the second domestic automaker to come to reach an accord with the labor union, and the deal covers some 41,000 workers. The agreement is expected to be discussed in further detail during separate press conferences held by representatives from the UAW and Ford. While no solid details are available as of the time of writing, Automotive News suggests that the deal may be ve
According to Automotive News, UAW President Bob King has his eye on organizing labor forces at the manufacturing facilities of German and Asian automakers here in the States. At this point, it's unclear which automaker or which plant the UAW will attempt to organize first, though King has said that he has sent letters to the CEOs of the transplant automakers informing them of the union's intentions. King says that the UAW is only interested in cooperating to improve operations, and that it will
GM just ratified an agreement with the Canadian Auto Workers union, and as soon as it did, Chrysler blasted it for being "weak." Chrysler's complaint was that the CAW didn't offer enough concessions to bring production costs into line with market realities. Now Ford has piped up in Chrysler's corner, saying "We believe the recently negotiated agreement between General Motors Canada and the Canadian Auto Workers will not keep Ford's Canadian operations competitive in today's global economy."
More than one-fourth of GM's 74,000 hourly employees are going to grab the loot and skedaddle. Earlier this year, UAW President Ron Gettlefinger estimated that 15,000 would put their hands out, but another couple thousand decided to hop on the General's money train. The workers are expected to finish their employment by July 1. GM's most recent deal with the UAW means it can replace those folks with lower wage workers and save itself a bundle on payroll. And that will make the job of saving itse
Buzz Hargrove isn't mincing words about his opinion of Chrysler LLC's strategy. Calling the decision to send the Magnum and Pacifica models out to pasture and cut shifts and jobs at the Brampton, Ontario plant "stupid," Hargrove has said the Canadian Auto Workers aren't interested in the type of concessions the UAW recently agreed to. While the UAW is allowing new hires to be given a lower pay level, as well as taking on a health care trust fund, the CAW will be having none of that, according to
The Big Three automakers' massive pension liabilities are well known. To remove that burden, a fund called a VEBA -- voluntary employee beneficiary association -- has been mooted. Automakers would put an agreed upon sum into the VEBA, after which they would be free from further pension obligations. The UAW would be responsible for administering the fund. Goodyear used that exact setup last year to end a strike with the United Steel Workers.
Hyundai's labor union has taken a note from the Teamster playbook and is attempting to strong-arm the automaker. During a ceremony to celebrate the new year, union members ganged up on Hyundai's president and discharged fire extinguishers. The ceremony came screeching to a halt with the president suffering a facial wound in the melee. The hubub arose over bonus pay. Workers were given a bonus equivalent to 100 percent of their normal pay. The extra pay was directly correlated to how close they c
The political alliances in the Motor City have historically been rather black-and-white, with the UAW lining up alongside Democrats and management favoring the Republicans. Yes, one can find exception to these stereotypes, but the above comes as close as one can to describing 40-some years of voting behavior in one sentence. But the times are changing, and traditional alliances between the political parties and their supporters in the auto industry are increasingly stressed.