General Motors said Monday it plans to effectively halt production at a number of plants in the U.S. and Canada next year and cut more than 14,000 jobs in a massive restructuring that will cost up to $3.8 billion.
In response, the United Auto Workers vowed to use “every legal, contractual and collective bargaining avenue” to fight the changes.
The Detroit automaker said plants in Ohio, Michigan, Maryland, and Ontario will be “unallocated” in 2019 and it will cease operations at two additional plants outside of North America by the end of next year. It will also wind down operations at propulsion plants in White Marsh, Maryland, and Warren, Michigan.
Although the decision effectively shuts down those plants, the company wouldn’t say outright that they are closing. Shuttering a plant is a matter of negotiation with the UAW, GM spokeswoman Stephanie Rice said in an email.
“We are announcing the cessation of certain products resulting in a number of plants being without allocated volume to produce,” she said.
The company plans to cut 15 percent of its salaried workers, resulting in a 25 percent reduction of its executive ranks, the company said. The cuts will eliminate more than 14,000 jobs in all, roughly 8,100 white collar positions and more than 6,000 factory jobs, according to the company.
GM employed 180,000 people as of Dec. 31 — 77,000 of which were salaried, according to a regulatory filing. About 51,000 employees were represented by labor unions, including the UAW.
“This callous decision by GM to reduce or cease operations in American plants, while opening or increasing production in Mexico and China plants for sales to American consumers, is, in its implementation, profoundly damaging to our American workforce,” said Terry Dittes, a UAW vice president who leads negotiations with GM.
SOURCE: Robert Ferris