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Sunday August 28th, 2016

Posted at 9:34pm

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In votes held Sunday, workers at each of the big three automakers authorized Unifor’s bargaining committees to initiate strike action if a settlement is not reached before the September 19th deadline.

“With this clear mandate our members have demonstrated they are in full support of their bargaining committees, and our direction in this set of negotiations. The bargaining committee will not accept a deal without a commitment to investment in Canada’s auto sector,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias, who is leading the Detroit Three negotiations.

“The push for new investments in Canada got a lot stronger today.”

Workers at General Motors voted 97.1% in favour of strike action, those at Ford Motor Company voted 98.9% in favour and at Fiat Chrysler Automobile voted 99% in favour.

At Unifor’s June 1st Auto Council meeting, elected representatives from every bargaining unit voted unanimously to make new investments in Canada, including new product allocations, the top priority of the talks. With this vote members have authorized the use of strike action if necessary.

Dias said the Detroit Three companies have done well in the four years since the last round of negotiations, with both shareholders and executives profiting. It is now time for the workers to be rewarded, and that begins with new investments in Canada. Unifor will be in a legal strike position at 11:59pm on September 19th.

“The membership took an important step today to support their bargaining committees, but our demand for new investment is not just about us. It is about maintaining and creating good paying jobs, it’s about our communities and it’s about the next generation,” Dias said.

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