Workers at General Motors’ CAMI Assembly Plant in Ingersoll, Ontario are going back to work. Represented by Unifor Local 88, the workers voted earlier today to ratify a new contract with GM, successfully ending a month-long strike.
CAMI workers took to the picket lines on Sept. 17th after their collective bargaining agreement with GM expired with no new deal. Subsequently, several gridlocks occurred over the course of the negotiations between the two parties. Nearly all of the sticking points surrounded the union’s insistence of language in the agreement designating the CAMI facility as the lead-producer of the Chevrolet Equinox.
Ironically, the union’s primary demand was not met in the final agreement. GM refused to include language that would equate to job security for the CAMI workers. Instead, the union did manage to get language in the contract that will make it more costly for GM to shut down the plant or downsize it.
GM already produces the popular Chevrolet Equinox at two plants in Mexico. Last week the company threatened to ramp up Equinox production at the new Mexican facilities and “wind down” striking CAMI if the union did not come to an agreement swiftly.
Earlier this year GM laid off hundreds of CAMI employees as part of the company’s transition of GMC Terrain production to Mexico.
Unifor says 85.6 percent of its members agreed to ratify the deal in this morning’s vote. Ratification of the deal means that employees will start returning to work later tonight as the plant begins the ramp-up process of coming back online.
GM Canada, which operates the CAMI plant, welcomes the reintroduction of Equinox production.
“I am confident that we will quickly pull together to continue to demonstrate to the world the outstanding productivity, innovation and quality that is synonymous with the CAMI workforce,” Steve Carlisle, president and managing director of GM Canada said in a written statement.