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UAW strike day 5: Jeep plant walkout idles suppliers

Kalea Hall and Breana Noble, The Detroit News on

Published in Automotive News

Negotiations continue between the Detroit Three automakers and the United Auto Workers on the fifth day of a targeted plant strike, with the fallout spreading to two suppliers of Stellantis NV's Toledo Jeep plant.

Bruce Baumhower, president of Local 12 that represents the Stellantis workers in Toledo, Ohio, said around 600 workers at Hyundai Mobis Co. Ltd. and Kuka AG were laid off when production halted and will receive $500 per week in strike pay, because those operations are within the confines of the Jeep plant complex.

The Hyundai Mobis workers build chassis for the Jeeps and Kuka workers build Gladiator bodies. "The two companies are inside the Jeep plant," he said. "Their employees are getting strike pay, but they are not allowed to strike."

More than 1,000 workers at another 10 suppliers, Baumhower said, also have been laid off and are expected to receive unemployment benefits, with the amount depending on the number of dependents a person has.

Bill Teets, spokesperson for Ohio's Department of Job and Family Services, said in a statement that each unemployment claim will be decided based on its specific circumstances.

The ramifications from the UAW's strike have been felt among other suppliers too, including CIE Newcor, a contract manufacturer that last week notified the state of plans to temporarily lay off 293 workers at facilities in Shiawassee and Lapeer counties.


The UAW strike could spread to more plants Friday.

In a video released late Monday, UAW President Shawn Fain said if the union doesn't see "serious progress" in negotiations with Ford Motor Co., Stellantis NV and General Motors Co., it will send out more union members, halting production at additional facilities.

"Autoworkers have waited long enough to make things right at the Big Three," Fain said in the Monday video, which ran over five minutes. "We're not waiting around. And we're not messing around. So noon on Friday, Sept. 22 is new a 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 to strike."

The additional walkouts would come one week after Fain called on 12,700 workers at three separate Detroit automaker facilities to strike. Those workers at Stellantis' Toledo Jeep plant, Ford's Michigan Assembly in Wayne and GM's Wentzville Assembly in Missouri have been walking picket lines while negotiations continue since their contracts expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday.


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