The union representing General Motors workers at the Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada plant have notified the company that they are going on strike. The union, Unifor Local 88, represents about three thousand workers at the plant that produces the General’s best-selling crossover, the Equinox, said that it was not able to reach a contract with the company’s negotiators. The CAMI workers at the Ingersoll plant are not in the same labor pool as the other GM plants across Canada who received a new four-year labor deal last year that calls for the manufacturer to invest over a half a billion dollars over the term of the agreement on plant updates.
The company spokesperson put out a release with the usual language, “…we made some positive stride…”, “…we’re disappointed that we didn’t get it done…” and “…we encourage the union to keep the discussion going…”. The last time there was a major strike at a GM plant in Canada was in 1996, when the union had its members walk off en masse across the country to get more job security. This apparently is the biggest sticking point with the Union right now as they look for better job security, especially in light of the changes happening on the NAFTA front and the fact that GM laid off a number of workers when it moved production from Canada to Mexico for its GMC Terrain platform. What might give the union a bit of leverage is that the Ingersoll plant produces the most Equinox crossovers for the North American market and this is significant as that vehicle is GM’s top selling model in the category and helping GM’s overall performance numbers.