In a significant development, the United Auto Workers (UAW) and Stellantis have reportedly reached a tentative agreement aimed at bringing an end to the 44-day strike, according to sources familiar with the matter. The agreement, currently in the finalization stage, is said to align with the economic terms of the tentative deal struck by the UAW with Ford earlier this week. However, it is important to note that this agreement must be subjected to a majority vote by the rank-and-file members at Stellantis.
Three anonymous sources close to the negotiations have disclosed that the agreement also includes provisions for product allocation at various U.S. plants, with a particular emphasis on vehicle assembly at the Belvidere Assembly Plant in Illinois. This plant had been idled by Stellantis earlier in the year, citing reasons related to the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) and a shortage of microchips. It’s noteworthy that this announcement coincides with the 44th day of the UAW’s strike against both Stellantis and General Motors (GM).
A spokesperson for Stellantis has declined to comment on the tentative agreement, emphasizing that the negotiations are still ongoing with GM.
Stellantis and GM have presented new offers this week, matching the 25% wage increase proposed in Ford’s agreement, set to expire in April 2028. The negotiations with GM are still in progress, and updates are awaited.
Currently, over 14,000 UAW members are on picket lines at two assembly plants in Sterling Heights and Toledo, Ohio, as well as at parts distribution centers nationwide. Furthermore, close to 10,000 GM workers remain on strike, and hundreds more employees at both companies face layoffs due to the extended downtime.
For context, Stellantis had previously announced the idling of its Belvidere Assembly Plant, which impacted 1,350 salaried and hourly workers. However, sources indicate that the tentative agreement may include plans for a battery plant to open in 2028, in addition to a Mopar distribution hub, alongside the revival of vehicle assembly at the plant.
Since September 15th, workers at Stellantis’ Toledo Assembly Complex, known for producing the Jeep® Wrangler (JL) and Gladiator (JT), have been on strike. While some workers expressed reservations about approving the deal reached with Ford without all the specific details, many are eager to return to work.
One notable absence from the information disclosed by the union is any mention of extending health-care coverage in retirement for workers hired after 2007. This is a matter of concern for several workers, who have pointed out the physical toll that working in the plants can take on their bodies.
The exact terms of the tentative agreement and the timeline for its ratification by UAW members remain to be seen. Still, it marks a significant step towards resolving a month-long labor dispute between the UAW and Stellantis.
Source: The Detroit News