The United Automobile Workers’ strike of 4,000 members at the truck maker comes at a time when the union is also striking at three major U.S. auto companies.
On Monday, nearly 4,000 members of United Automobile Workers went on strike in protest against Mack Trucks after rejecting the tentative contract that the union’s leaders negotiated with the company.
On Sunday, the union informed Mack that its members had voted 73 percent against the contract and that a walkout would be held at the company’s plants in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Florida.
The U.A.W. president, Shawn Fain, wrote in a letter to Volvo Trucks, Mack’s parent company. “The members have spoken and they are the highest authority within our union.” Shawn Fain wrote a letter addressed to Volvo Trucks, the parent company of Mack.
Negotiations between the two sides have lasted three months. They cover a wide range of topics, including wage increases and cost-of-living allowances. Other issues include job security, pensions coverage, prescription drug coverage, overtime, and pensions. The contract proposed included raises of 19% over five years and a $3,500 bonus for ratifying it.
Stephen Roy, Mack’s President, stated in a press release that his company was “surprised” and “disappointed,” noting the U.A.W. Negotiators called the tentative contract a “record for the heavy-truck industry.”
The sales of commercial trucks have slowly recovered from the disruptions brought on by the pandemic caused by coronavirus. Volvo predicts a 10% increase in truck sales in North America this year. Mack holds a share of about 6 percent in the North American truck market.
The U.A.W. is also striking. The U.A.W. is currently on strike in the plants and distribution centers owned by General Motors and Ford Motor. Stellantis, which makes Chrysler, Jeep, and Ram, also has a strike.
The U.A.W. has expanded the auto strike, which began at three factories nearly a week ago. The U.A.W. has increased the strike in an effort to increase pressure on manufacturers; around 25,000 out of 150,000 U.A.W. The three automakers’ employees are currently on strike. The strike affects the two G.M. plants, two Ford plants, one Stellantis plant, as well as 38 G.M. spare parts warehouses. Stellantis.
The automakers offered to increase wages by more than 20 percent in four years. The automakers have agreed to reduce the time it takes for a worker to move from an entry-level salary of $17 per hour to the highest level wage of $32 per hour from eight years to four.
The union wants to see wage increases that keep pace with inflation, as they haven’t kept up in the past 15 years. The association is also demanding that companies pay for retiree health insurance, provide pensions to more workers, and convert temporary staff into permanent employees.