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daniel howes
Daniel Howes / Detroit News

The United Auto Workers walkout at General Motors was inevitable, ensured by the automaker’s decision to close four U.S. plants.

Was it necessary? Probably.

UAW workers striking in Flint.
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

The United Auto Workers and General Motors have reached a tentative contract agreement that could end a month-long strike that brought the automaker's U.S. factories to a standstill.

four men holding picket signs
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

The UAW and GM have a tentative contract.

The proposed four-year contract could end the longest national strike against the carmaker since 1970. But union leaders still have to sell the deal to a rank and file that's been on the picket line for a month.

four men holding picket signs
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

As the UAW's strike against GM enters its fifth week, the two sides may finally be close to reaching a proposed deal on a new contract.

The talks have been unusually difficult, with negotiators struggling to resolve disputes over job security, temporary workers, health insurance, and wage increases. 

uaw strike signs laying on the ground
Katie Raymond / Michigan Radio

The United Auto Workers strike against General Motors is in its third week, and it's costing a lot of people a lot of money.

"At this point, it's already quite painful in the United States, particularly in metro Detroit, says Patrick Anderson, CEO of the Anderson Economic Group.  "And our estimated wage losses are already above $400 million right out of people's paychecks that work in the automotive industry."

That $400 million estimate includes both striking GM workers and workers in the supplier industry who've been laid off because of the strike.

UAW worker on strike
Katie Raymond / Michigan Radio

Dustin Dwyer / Michigan Radio

At the union hall for UAW Local 167 in Wyoming, just south of Grand Rapids, it’s nearly lunchtime for the workers walking the picket lines

Elizabeth Warren stands next to union workers on strike
Bryce Huffman / Michigan Radio

Democratic Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren met with the United Auto Workers union members who are on strike at General Motors in Detroit.

Senator Warren, who walked in solidarity with hundreds of UAW workers outside the GM Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant on Sunday, says the country needs a Department of Labor that stands by union workers.

UAW workers went on strike in Flint Monday.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

United Ways in Michigan are preparing to help workers affected by the UAW- GM strike.

If the strike goes on, workers will get $250 per week in strike pay, and their health care benefits have already been cut.

factory
Thomas Hawk / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

The effects of the UAW strike at GM are beginning to be felt by parts suppliers.

But suppliers may not feel the pain as much as in years past.

Brian Long is director of Supply Chain management research at Grand Valley State University. He surveys supply companies in West Michigan every month. And he says most have diversified their businesses.

Tracy Samilton / Michigan Radio

On day two of the United Auto Worker's national strike against General Motors, I caught up with UAW member Jessie Kelly, right after her four-hour shift on the picket line at GM's Warren Tech Center. 

Kelly, a 29-year-old single mom of one, is in a skilled trades apprentice program at GM. It's a long way from her early days with the automaker, when she was a temp. 

General Motors headquarters in Detroit.
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, with current contracts set to expire this weekend, the clock is ticking for General Motors and the United Auto Workers union to strike a deal. Plus, we'll hear how some white nationalists are blending xenophobic ideology with environmentalism and calling themselves “eco-fascists.”

General Motors workers made big concessions to help pull the automaker out of its 2009 bankruptcy. Now, the company is making record profits.

But, the Warren Transmission plant in Michigan shut its doors at the tail end of June, and most of the workers have been placed at other plants. It's a ghost factory.

daniel howes
Daniel Howes / Detroit News

They’re waiting for the end at Lordstown, the giant auto plant General Motors says it no longer needs.

Local 1112 President Dave Green comes in every day. He fields calls from worried members, offers counsel about whether to take a transfer or take a chance that union bargainers back in Detroit might get a product to save the plant.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

General Motors is investing $150 million to boost production at its Flint assembly plant. Company officials made the announcement at the plant on Wednesday.

The plant produces the automaker’s profitable heavy duty pick-up trucks. GM announced earlier this year that it would add another 1,000  jobs in Flint for the rollout of the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra.

In Flint Wednesday, GM President Mark Reuss said it’s important for the automaker to minimize logistical costs across its supply chain.

Tracy Samilton / Michigan Radio

General Motors CEO Mary Barra says the automaker will build a new electric vehicle at its Orion Assembly Plant - where it already builds the all-electric Bolt. She says details about the vehicle will come later.

Barra, who's been head of General Motors since 2014, says GM will invest $300 million in the plant and add 400 jobs.

"EVs are going to help us drive our vision of a world with zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion," says Barra. "And allow us to deliver cleaner air and a healthier planet."

Jeffrey Sauger / Chevrolet

The United Auto Workers union is suing General Motors over its decision late last year to "unallocate" three plants in the U.S., one of them the Warren Transmission Plant in Michigan.

"Unallocate" means, according to GM, ending production of the plants' current products while not assigning new ones.

The union says it's a code word for closing, which is prohibited under the current four year contract.

Harley Shaiken is a labor expert at the University of California Berkeley.

calypsocom / Flickr

General Motors says it’s extending the life of its Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant for another seven months.

The company had planned to close the plant in June, but GM said Friday it will now keep it open through January 2020.

Daniel Howes / Detroit News

Generous Motors is officially gone.

The automaker’s plan to idle and try to close five North American plants is hurtling toward a Titanic battle over the direction of Detroit’s auto industry.

Two sides with totally opposed views of the market today where technology is heading and how it will affect jobs and investment will play out this year  the most consequential since the auto bankruptcies a decade ago.

person getting their blood pressure taken
Unsplash

Today on Stateside, new work requirements for Michigan Medicaid recipients are set to go into effect in 2020. A new study out of Arkansas gives an idea of the potential consequences for healthcare coverage in the state. Plus, the challenges that first-generation and minority students face in college, and a Grand Rapids program that wants to help them get “to and through” college.

General Motors

It's been a couple days of good and bad news for General Motors employees.

GM announced Tuesday it's adding a thousand workers to build heavy duty trucks at its Flint Assembly plant. That's just as the automaker begins laying off 4,000 white collar workers, over the next two weeks.

Lavora Barnes in a gray suit in front of the Michigan capitol building
Lavora Barnes for MDP Chair campaign photo

Today on Stateside, what you need to know about the thousands of white-collar GM workers losing their jobs today. Plus, a recent study finds that firearms are the second leading cause of death among children and teens in the United States, killing eight young people every day. 

GM Renaissance Center in Detroit.
John F. Martin / Creative Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

General Motors is expected to start laying off about 4,000 white-collar workers on Monday.

The cuts come after GM's November announcement of dramatic restructuring. Multiple media outlets are reporting these upcoming layoffs are fewer than initially thought.

David Kudla is the CEO of Mainstay Capital Management. He says GM bought out thousands of white-collar employees close to retirement.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

United Auto Workers members gathered outside Detroit’s Cobo Center Friday evening during the North American International Auto Show’s annual charity preview event.

They held a protest and candlelight vigil in solidarity with General Motors workers who face layoffs or relocation.

That’s because GM plans to close five U.S. plants this year, including two in Michigan: Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly, and Warren Transmission.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer rallied with union members before the event. She promised to “stand with” with them, saying workers had to give up a lot to keep GM afloat over the past ten years.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

As General Motors tries to forge a new future at this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit, some employees spoke out Monday about how they feel the company has compromised their futures—and say the automaker owes them better.

Members of UAW Local 22 work at the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant. GM announced around Thanksgiving it intends to close the plant, which employs about 1,600 people, sometime this year.

robert and bunny carlson
Courtesy of Ken Fischer

 

Today on Stateside, we speak with a Grand Rapids couple about their 61-year-long tradition of attending University Musical Society's performance of Handel's Messiah. Plus, General Motors announced Monday it will cut 14,000 jobs in North America. We discuss the disconnect between the political promises President Donald Trump made to workers in the Rust Belt, and the reality of running a transportation business in 2018. 

A white car with a sign atop it reading "driver education student driver."
Wikimedia Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Today on Stateside, General Motors announced that it will end production at several facilities across the nation, including two here in Michigan. Plus, the editor of a new collection of Joni Mitchell interviews talks about the singer-songwriter’s rise to fame and her musical debut in Detroit’s folk scene. 

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below. 

Warren Transmission Operations
General Motors

Two Michigan auto factories will halt production in 2019.

General Motors announced Monday morning that the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant and Warren transmission operations plant will cease production in 2019, as well as plants in Ontario, Ohio, and Maryland.

Daniel Howes / Detroit News

Judging by conventional wisdom and all-knowing polls, President Donald Trump and his Republicans face a historic wipeout in the coming mid-term elections.

But if you accept the Clintonian notion that “it’s the economy, stupid” such thinking may be just a bit too conventional.

House in Pontiac
Courtesy of John Bry

 

Today on Stateside, we hear about an effort to rehabilitate houses in an historic Pontiac neighborhood originally built by GM for its workers. Plus, what Michigan could do to encourage affordable short-term lenders to set up shop in the state. 

Listen to the full show above or find individual stories below. 

Michigan regulations make affordable short-term loans hard to come by

 

  

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