Last week UAW workers for GM voted to authorize a strike if need be.
Now, Mlive reports the chances of calling a strike are “very, very low”, according to Sean McAlinden, chief economist at the Center for Automotive Research in Michigan.
In a letter to union presidents and chairpersons, UAW Vice President Cindy Estrada said a full 97 percent of GM’s roughly 50,000 UAW workers voted in favor of the strike authorization. While the authorization permits leadership to call a strike, the vote itself does not indicate a strike is imminent.
The authorization also marks the very first GM workers for UAW can strike since 2009, after workers were banned from walking due to stipulations laid out in GM’s government bailout.
The UAW first signed contacts with GM, Ford and Chrysler back in 2011 and the strike authorization comes just days before the contract’s September 15 expiration date. Contract negations began in July and are expected to lead into next month, despite the fixed expiration date.
“We remain committed to working with our UAW partners on an agreement that benefits employees and strengthens GM’s long-term competitiveness,” said a GM spokesperson.