The ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has completely upended General Motors’ production operations in North America, with manufacturing facilities suspended in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Now, however, it looks as though GM is calling workers back to the assembly line at its production facility in Arlington, Texas.
According to a recent report from ABC news affiliate WXYZ-TV 7, General Motors recently issued a message to workers asking workers to take up shifts as early as Monday of next week.
“Our customers are counting on our trucks and it is important for the company to changeover to our new trucks as quickly as possible,” the message reads, according to the WXYZ report. “To this end, in the next hours, we will begin calling our full seniority hourly employees to volunteer to commit to work next week beginning Monday, March 30 on a day shift. In addition, volunteers will be solicited for all three shifts in maintenance and repair.”
“Temporary workers will be called if more volunteers are needed,” the message adds.
The General Motors assembly facility in Arlington, Texas, is responsible for production of the automaker’s line of full-size SUVs and trucks, including the Chevrolet Tahoe, Chevrolet Suburban, GMC Yukon and Yukon XL, and Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV. The facility spans 4.375 million square feet, and employees 4,255 workers.
According to the report, General Motors needs at least 1,100 workers to run the assembly line day shift. GM says it is taking additional precautions to safeguard employee health, including thermal temperature scanning, questionnaires, and additional cleaning crews. GM also says that the work is expected to last no more than a week, after which employees “would return to layoff status.”
Earlier this week, General Motors announced sweeping salary reductions amid work stoppages resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. The reductions include a 20-percent pay deferment for salaried employees working from home, 25-percent salary reduction for GM employees unable to work from home (mostly those in manufacturing and engineering roles), and a 25- to 30-percent pay cut for GM executives.