The United Auto Workers union says it plans to pick a target for contract negotiations by Sept. 14, the day its current four-year accord with the major automakers ends.
The union will pick one U.S. carmaker to negotiate with exclusively to set the pattern of major economic terms for all three companies, UAW spokesman Brian Rothenberg said in an interview Monday.
For the first time in more than a decade, the union, Ford Motor Co., General Motors Co. and the FCA US LLC unit of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV are entering contract negotiations that aren’t under a heavy economic cloud. Still, the companies are trying to resist reverting to free-spending ways, especially with the U.S. industry’s expansion slowing in its sixth year. The union believes it is payback time.
“It’s our time. It’s our moment. It is us in solidarity,” UAW President Dennis Williams told a union crowd in Detroit during a Labor Day speech.
The talks will set terms for more than 140,000 autoworkers, representing $17 billion in wages and benefits, according to estimates by the Center for Automotive Research.