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Major General Motors facility halts production amid strike

Workers with the UAW union continued to strike as plants in multiple states saw furloughs and stalls in production.
Major General Motors facility halts production amid strike
Posted at 3:04 PM, Sep 20, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-20 17:04:14-04

Automaker General Motors said on Wednesday it has decided to idle a significant plant in Kansas City, Kansas, citing a supply issue caused by the UAW strike.

The idled plant is GM's Fairfax Assembly Plant, which was affected by the strike near St. Louis, Scripps News Kansas City reported. 

The closure comes as a ripple effect stemming from the ongoing strike at Wentzville Assembly. Employees there went on strike after GM leadership and the United Auto Workers union could not come to an agreement on contract terms.

"It is unfortunate that the UAW leadership’s decision to call a strike at Wentzville Assembly has already had a negative ripple effect, with GM’s Fairfax Assembly plant in Kansas being idled today — and most of its represented team members leaving the plant, as there is no work available," GM said in a statement. 

Fairfax Assembly employs over 2,000 individuals. 

GM said, "due to the specific circumstances of this situation," it would not provide impacted employees with SUB-pay from the company as compensation for any wages lost during the strike. 

SEE MORE: Stellantis hints at more layoffs in response to UAW strike

"We have said repeatedly that nobody wins in a strike, and that effects go well beyond our employees on the plant floor and negatively impact our customers, suppliers and the communities where we do business — such as in greater Kansas City," the company said. "What happened to our Fairfax team members is a clear and immediate demonstration of that fact. We will continue to bargain in good faith with the union to reach an agreement as quickly as possible."

Wednesday marked day six of the United Auto Workers strike. 

The Wentzville assembly plant is one of three plants nationwide to officially go on strike. The Stellantis center in Toledo, Ohio, and a Ford assembly location in Wayne, Michigan, have also gone on strike.

Stellantis said it would temporarily lay off around 70 workers in Ohio, and another 300 workers were expected to possibly be furloughed in Indiana as well. Those and other possible impacts were blamed on the Toledo strike. 

The UAW said more workers could join the strike if they didn't see significant results in the talks by Friday. 

"No one should work at factories like this and make vehicles they can't afford to buy, it makes no sense," said one retired worker who joined the picket line and spoke to Scripps News. 

This story was originally published by Jack Anstine at Scripps News Kansas City


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