Auto workers walk off the job to save GM’s Oshawa, Canada plant

Unionized workers of the Lear car seat assembly plant in Whitby, Ontario, Canada, walked off the job on Friday in solidarity with their union's campaign to save a General Motors assembly plant in nearby Oshawa, Ontario. Photo courtesy of Unifor/Twitter

Feb. 8 (UPI) — Union workers at a Canadian car seat plant walked off the job Friday to protest General Motors’ planned closure of an Ontario manufacturing facility.

About 220 workers at the Lear plant in Whitby, Ontario, walked off the job at the start of the day shift. The action by Local 222 of Unifor, Canada’s autoworkers’ union, is in solidarity with the union’s efforts to save the General Motors assembly plant in nearby Oshawa, Ontario.

In November, GM announced the planned closure of five plants, the Ontario plant near Toronto and four more in the United States. About 2,600 members are employed at the Oshawa plant, where GM has had a presence in the city for over 100 years.

With GM’s just-in-time delivery protocol, production of Buick Regal, Chevrolet Impala and Cadillac XTS models at the Oshawa plant could quickly be interrupted. The employees at Lear face probable job losses in the Oshawa plant’s closure.

“GM is set to devastate this community, yet despite repeated calls we continue to wait for meaningful intervention from federal and provincial government,” Jerry Dias, Unifor president, said in a statement on Friday. “We demand that government act to protect these workers who stand to lose everything, and work with Unifor and GM to find a solution for the Oshawa Assembly Plant.”

Unifor has campaigned to save the plant, with protests and an anti-GM advertisement seen by Canadian viewers of last week’s Super Bowl.


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