After a little more than seven weeks of closed-door negotiations, General Motors Co. has cut a new four-year deal with union leaders to create more jobs and better benefits.
GM and United Auto Workers reached the agreement late Friday night. GM was the first of the Detroit Three to reach agreement with the UAW.
Details were not released, but the union said the deal includes some of its major goals, including improvements in profit-sharing, promises of new jobs and better health care benefits for workers, the Associated Press reports.
The new four-year contract will serve as a template for pending negotiations with Chrysler Group LLC and Ford Motor Co. and will set the pay and benefits for 112,500 U.S. auto workers. It will also set the pay and benefits at nonunion auto companies and other industries around the country, the report adds.
The talks come without the strikes and public outcry seen in years past and are the first since GM and Chrysler sought government aid to make it through bankruptcy protection in 2009.
UAW Vice President Joe Ashton, the chief negotiator with GM, said in a statement that now that the company is posting profits again, “Our members want to share in the success.”
Workers must vote on the plan before it takes effect; a vote is expected within 10 days. Negotiations at Chrysler will continue through the weekend, and they resume Monday at Ford, the AP reports.
After GM filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009, the automaker shut down 14 factories and cut more than 65,000 blue-collar jobs in the U.S. through buyouts, early retirement offers and layoffs, leaving the employment forecast in Detroit especially bleak.
Black-owned car dealerships in Detroit also took a hit: According to reports, there are nearly half as many in the U.S. now as there were three years ago.
As the industry slowly rebounds, Black unemployment in Michigan remains at a concerning 24 percent, despite overall employment levels decreasing in the state, according to a recent data from the Michigan League for Human Services.
Nationally, Black unemployment stands at 16. 7 percent.
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