According to a report from Bowling Green Daily News, members of UAW Local 2164 voted overwhelmingly to reject the most recent offer from plant management, with 98 percent of production workers and 97 percent of skilled trades workers voting against the proposal.
Worker demands include the use of UAW members for contracted work like 3D printing, maintenance, and striping. The demands also include concerns related to sanitation, health, and safety.
“We pretty much knew what the outcome would be,” said shop chairman for Local 2164, Jason Watson, per the Bowling Green Daily News. “It’s disappointing that the company doesn’t take into consideration what the hourly workers are asking for in improvements.”
The outsourcing of work to non-union members has been a particularly important issue, as many of the workers have been transferred to the Bowling Green facility from other GM production facilities that were otherwise closed or downsized.
Although the vote to reject the latest local contract proposal will not result in any immediate consequences, union members are said to have authorized a strike in the event that an agreement is not found.
“We are disappointed that UAW Local 2164 voted down the local contract,” said management at the Bowling Green facility in a statement. “We will continue to meet with the local union to understand the vote and will continue to negotiate. Our goal is to reach an agreement that benefits employees and positions our business to be competitive as we move forward.”
Production of the C8 Corvette has been a tumultuous affair, to say the least. A nationwide labor strike in 2019 delayed the initial production start date for the eighth-generation sports car, followed by production delays resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and associated supply chain issues. Most recently, production was impacted by a tornado that damaged the facility and destroyed several vehicles.