United Auto Workers Union President Sean Fein (center) marches with UAW members through downtown Detroit after a rally in support of union members striking against the Big Three automakers on September 15, 2023 in Detroit, Michigan.
Bill Priano | Getty Images
DETROIT — A major automaker is questioning the United Auto Workers union’s motivations for launching a targeted strike after a leaked message from a union official called for “keep people injured for months.”
In a private group message on Platform It is said that the company is arguing that it has caused “repeated reputational damage and management confusion.”
The message was seen by CNBC and first reported on Thursday. detroit news, We disagree with UAW President Sean Fein’s public statement that the union is negotiating in good faith and is “open to negotiations 24/7.”
“It is now clear that UAW leadership always intended to cause months of chaos, no matter what harm it caused to our members and their communities.” general motors said in an emailed statement. “The leaked information raises questions about who is actually in charge of the UAW’s strategy and shows a callous disregard for the seriousness of the problem.”
GM CEO Mary Barra, ford motor CEO Jim Farley publicly expressed his frustration with the union’s bargaining and lack of bargaining ahead of the union-imposed strike deadline of 11:59pm on September 14th.
Mark Truby, Ford’s head of communications, said in a statement Friday that the leaked messages were “disappointing, to say the least, given what’s at stake for our employees, our company and our region.” ” he said.
Chrysler’s parent company Stellantis called the messages “incredibly disturbing” and said they “strongly indicate that the UAW’s approach to these negotiations is not in the best interests of workers.”
“We regret that our employees appear to be being used as pawns in an agenda that is not intended to meet their needs,” Stellantis said in an emailed statement.
Furman has been readily available during negotiations, but did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment on Friday. Calls to his phone went straight to full voicemail.
In an interview with The Detroit News, Fuhrman denied writing the messages, but the paper said he called them “private messages” that he “shouldn’t have written.”
Mr. Fuhrman is a former staff writer and host of Labor Notes and is involved in union messaging, media communications, speech writing and internal communications.
The leaked message comes as Mr. Fein announced Friday that the union is planning additional factory strikes as part of a “stand-up strike,” a nod to the UAW’s historic “sit-in” strikes of the 1930s. It was announced when.
In one message, Fuhrman called Fein, who has touted his faith and worship in recent messages to union members, “a snobbish generation x class warfare Christian white dude from Indiana who quotes Malcolm X.” expressing.
The expansion of the strike comes despite a record contract offer from the automaker, including a roughly 20% hourly wage increase, thousands of dollars in bonuses, the retention of union platinum health care and other generous benefits. Ta.
The union has called for a 40% increase in hourly wages, a shorter work week, a transition to a traditional pension, the elimination of compensation tiers and the reinstatement of cost-of-living adjustments, among other contract improvements.
The automakers said they will continue collective bargaining with UAW negotiators to reach a tentative agreement for the 146,000 autoworkers under the contract.