The UAW’s contracts with GM, Ford and Fiat Chrysler are set to expire on September 14, with the union hoping to ratify a new agreement with the Detroit Big Three before that time.
Discussions surrounding GM deal will take place at the automaker’s world headquarters at the Renaissance Center in Detroit.
“We look forward to having productive discussions about building a stronger future for our employees and our business,” GM CEO Mary Barra said in a statement. “Our employees play a critical role in our success, and I am very excited about the opportunities in front of us that will enable GM and the UAW to lead in the transformation of the auto industry.”
GM’s chief negotiator for the UAW talks, Scott Sandefur, said the automaker is looking forward to “working together with the UAW to reach a competitive agreement – one that allows our company, our employees and the communities where we do business to continue to share in the success of our efforts.”
In a statement made earlier in the week Barra brought up the automaker’s desire to be first to deliver a self-driving car to market and to make more electric vehicles, saying success in these areas could lead to more UAW positions going forward.
“What’s at stake and the opportunity for whoever gets it right is absolutely huge,” she said. “It represents growth, and that means jobs.”
GM is looking to cut healthcare costs with the new UAW contract and may seek to implement more temporary workers in the future as a result. All of the Big Three are also expected to stand their ground on issues such as wage increases and new product allocation for their respective US vehicle plants, which may lead to strikes. The UAW seems prepared to strike, as well, having increased its strike pay from $200 per week to $250 per week earlier this year.