"We've given up so much": UAW workers united on day four of strike

"We've given up so much": UAW workers united on day four of strike

WAYNE, Mich. (CBS DETROIT) – A source familiar with talks told CBS News Detroit on Monday the UAW is waiting on new counteroffers from Detroit's three automakers.

They did have meetings with General Motors and Ford over the weekend. Talks with Ford were described as productive.

On Monday, they met with Stellantis, and numbers are still far apart on day four of this strike, so there's a strong chance that we will likely see more workers walk off the job.

"No scab! No scab!" striking Ford workers yelled at delivery drivers arriving and leaving the Wayne Ford Assembly Plant.

Chris McKnight/CBS Detroit

They were letting drivers know what they were doing was an affront to their cause.

"Truckers are trying to come in. We're not blocking them. But we're giving them a little bit of a hard time. We can't block them. But it seems like things are getting ramped up," Sarah Walker, a Ford employee, said.

The UAW members recognize the strength in numbers as their leaders are back at the bargaining table.

The demands include a 36% raise, job protections with the rise of electric vehicles, and a rollback of the concessions they say they made when the companies were on the brink of bankruptcy.

"I came in at $15.75 roughly, and right now, I make about 20 and some change. So you know, that's life-changing if we were to get moved up to where we need to be the 40% pay increase," Walker said.

Eric Hollins has worked at the Wayne Ford Assembly Plant for 29 years. He'd like to see pensions come back.

"We've given up so much over a period of time. So right now, at this point, with the new people coming in on them, they're not getting treated fairly. We're just asking for fair treatment across the board," Hollins said. 

The automakers have countered with about a 20% pay bump, which the union says is not enough. 

"We're prepared to do whatever we have to do so the membership is ready. The membership is fed up. We're fed up with falling behind," Shawn Fain, president of the UAW, said Sunday on CBS Face The Nation.

Although President Biden said he's sending his acting labor secretary and a senior aide to Detroit to help with contract talks, a White House official told reporters Monday they will not serve as mediators and won't be at the bargaining table. 

In the meantime, Ford is bracing to deal with picket lines in Canada if they don't reach an agreement with union workers by 11:59 p.m. Monday.

The Canadian union extended its contracts with GM and Stellantis -- but not with Ford, their target company. 

"Stand strong. It's gonna be a bump in the road. But you got to prepare yourself for it. You know what we've been asking for. You know what we've given up. You stay strong. Keep your head up and stay together as a team, and we'll get through this," Hollins said. 

As a result of the strike here in the U.S., Ford has laid off 600 workers at their Wayne Assembly Plant. GM is considering taking similar action at their plant in Kansas City, Kansas, that would impact 2,000 workers. 

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