UAW President Shawn Fain announced a new strike date for the Big Three automakers, giving them a stern ultimatum in a recorded message posted on Facebook.
The new deadline will be Friday, Sept. 22 at 12 p.m. If Ford Motor Company, General Motors, or Stellantis do not make substantial progress toward a fair agreement, the UAW said it will call on more members to join what they call the “stand up” strike.
Across the border, Unifor, which represents Ford autoworkers in Canada, says that if its wage and pension demands are unmet by 12 a.m. on Tuesday (Sept. 19), all Ford Unifor workers will walk off the job.
This follows a weekend of constant talks. The UAW characterized its talks with Ford as reasonably productive but offered no critique of talks with Stellantis and General Motors, only that there had been discussions.
Currently, the only plant the UAW is picketing in Michigan is Ford’s Michigan Assembly in Wayne.
“We’ve been available 24/7 to bargain a deal that recognizes our members sacrifices and contributions to these record profits. Still the Big Three failed to get down to business.
That’s why, last week, our brave union family at Wentzville Assembly, Toledo Assembly, and final assembly and paint departments at Michigan Assembly were called on to Stand Up and go out on strike. And that’s exactly what they did.
Just as importantly, all the rest of you stayed on the job. That is the only way this strategy works. We’re going to keep hitting the company where we need to, when we need to. And we’re not going to keep waiting around forever while they drag this out.
I have been clear with the Big Three every step of the way. And I’m going to be crystal clear again right now. If we don’t make serious progress by noon on Friday, September 22nd, more locals will be called on to Stand Up and join the strike. That will mark more than a week since our first members walked out. And that will mark more than a week of the Big Three failing to make progress in negotiations toward reaching a deal that does right by our members.
Autoworkers have waited long enough to make things right at the Big Three. We’re not waiting around, and we’re not messing around. So, noon on Friday, September 22nd is a new deadline.
Either the Big Three get down to business and work with us to make progress in negotiations or more locals will be called on to Stand Up and go out on strike.
Between now and then, UAW members will keep organizing actions. Those on strike will remain on strike. And those on the job will keep monitoring for unilateral changes made by management, which are NOT allowed under an expired contract.
Keep organizing rallies. Keep organizing red shirt days. Keep up the energy and keep showing the companies that you are ready to join the strike if necessary.
This is our generation’s defining moment.
So be ready to stand up.”UAW President Shawn Fain