CAW reaches tentative agreement with CAMI

CAW reaches tentative agreement with CAMI

Ratification vote slated for Sunday at GM-Suzuki joint venture plant

Chrissie Thompson
Automotive News | September 19, 2009 – 5:25 pm EST


The Canadian Auto Workers have reached a tentative agreement with CAMI, the joint venture between General Motors Co. and Suzuki Motor Corp., the union said today.

The approximately 2,250 CAW workers from the CAMI plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, will vote on the deal tomorrow. The CAW expects to have results in the afternoon, the union said in a statement.

The deal reflects the automakers’ “commitment to a manufacturing footprint for the CAMI facility,” CAW President Ken Lewenza said in a statement.

While the plant is still building two GM models, production of its Suzuki model, the XL7 SUV, was suspended in May. Suzuki has said it is committed to the 20-year-old joint venture, but it hasn’t decided when it will resume production there.

Much of the agreement would not take effect until Sept. 2010, the CAW said. It said it would release more details of the deal after Sunday’s vote.

"This year has been extremely difficult and we hope this new agreement will create greater security for CAMI workers,” said Mike Van Boekel, the CAW’s chair for the CAMI plant.

Workers at the plant have survived GM’s bankruptcy, which ended July 10, along with Suzuki’s tanking sales. Suzuki’s U.S. light-vehicle sales had fallen 54.9 percent through August, the biggest loss of any volume automaker.

The CAMI plant currently builds the Chevrolet Equinox and the GMC Terrain. GM plans to add a third shift to the plant in October

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