LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — United Auto Workers President Shawn Fain released a statement Saturday morning in response to plans of temporary layoffs of non-striking workers at General Motors and Ford.
Fain’s statement on Saturday is as follows:
“Let’s be clear: if the Big Three decide to lay people off who aren’t on strike, that’s them trying to put the squeeze on our members to settle for less. With their record profits, they don’t have to lay off a single employee. In fact, they could double every autoworker’s pay, not raise car prices, and still rake in billions of dollars.
“Their plan won’t work. The UAW will make sure any worker laid off in the Big Three’s latest attack will not go without an income. We’ll organize one day longer than they can, and go the distance to win economic and social justice at the Big Three.” – Shawn Fain, UAW President
Fain’s statement comes just a day after UAW began its strike against Big Three automakers Stellantis, GM and Ford at three automobile plants in Missouri, Michigan and Ohio.
CBS Detroit reported Saturday that Ford had told 600 workers at its Wayne, Michigan plant not to report to work Friday, referring to “knock-on effects” of the UAW strike.
“Our production system is highly interconnected, which means the UAW’s targeted strike strategy will have knock-on effects for facilities that are not directly targeted for a work stoppage,” Ford said in a statement.
GM also announced plans Friday to lay off 2,000 workers at its Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas as early as this coming week, citing a “ripple effect” of the strike at its Wentzville assembly plant in Missouri, ABC News reported Saturday.
“We have said repeatedly that nobody wins in a strike, and that effects go well beyond our employees on the plant floor and negatively impact our customers, suppliers and the communities where we do business,” GM said in a statement. “What happened to our Fairfax team members is a clear and immediate demonstration of that fact.”
The strike began after union leaders said the three automakers had failed to agree on sufficient terms for a renewed contract. UAW’s contracts with Stellantis, GM and Ford expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday.
ABC News reported Saturday that a UAW source said the union had “reasonably productive conversations with Ford” that day.
ABC News and CBS News contributed to this report.