GM reinstates health care benefits for striking UAW members

Henrietta Strickland
September 27, 2019

"Finally, it is time for GM to come to the bargaining table with an offer that reflects the hard work of our members who make you successful and will settle this strike on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of UAW families, and stop toying with our families' health and well-being".

The company says in an email to the United Auto Workers union that it will keep benefits in place due to significant confusion among members.

"GM has chosen to work with our providers to keep all benefits fully in place for striking hourly employees, so they have no disruption to their medical care, including vision, prescription and dental coverage", the letter says.

UAW members went on strike at GM on September 16 seeking higher pay, greater job security, a bigger share of the leading US automaker's profit and protection of their healthcare benefits.

Jones Lang LaSalle Americas Inc., a professional services firm, confirmed Thursday that 66 maintenance workers at the General Motors Fairfax Assembly and Stamping Plant were temporarily laid off after United Automobile Workers went on strike earlier this month at the facility in Kansas City, Kansas. GM immediately shifted responsibility for the health insurance to the union's strike fund.

On day 10 of the strike, the UAW said all unsettled proposals have been presented to General Motors and the union is waiting for their response.

It wasn't clear how the rhetoric or the health care spat would affect contract talks aimed at ending the strike by 49,000 workers that has shut down manufacturing for almost two weeks at more than 30 GM plants across the nation. "The only thing GM gained was a tarnished reputation", he said in a statement. GM spends about $900 million on health benefits for the roughly 49,000 hourly employees and their 69,000 dependents, the company has previously stated.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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