Published: Tue, November 27, 2018
Markets | By Erika Turner

General Motors To Lay Off Nearly 15,000 Workers, Close Plants

General Motors To Lay Off Nearly 15,000 Workers, Close Plants

Sales of the compact auto were down 27 percent through September, GM said. In speaking with GM, we have stressed the importance of supporting their employees through this hard transition.

The reduction includes 8,100 white-collar workers, some of whom will take buyouts and others who will be laid off. Some will take buyouts while others will be laid off.

About 6,000 factory workers could lose jobs in the USA and Canada, although some could transfer to truck and SUV plants.

The Premier said one of the ways the government plans to help the workers is through job sharing, as well as asking the federal government to make some changes in the way Employment Insurance (EI) can be collected. The Cruze compact auto will be discontinued in the USA market in 2019.

Rivals Ford Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV have both curtailed USA vehicle production.

Shares of GM, the largest automaker in the USA which sells the Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac and GMC brands, rose almost 6 percent on the news to $37.93 in midday trading Monday. GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra is trying to make the company leaner as US auto demand slides from a record in 2016 and sales in China - GM's other profit center - are also in a slump. It is unclear whether they will also be affected.

OH lawmakers urged GM to reconsider.

Trump said he was being tough on Barra. It makes no sense to keep producing some vehicle models at a loss.

At a rally near the plant last summer, Trump talked about passing by big factories whose jobs "have left OH", then told people not to sell their homes because the jobs are "coming back. They're all coming back".

Unlike its plants making passenger cars, many of GM's plants producing its higher-margin trucks and SUVs are running on three shifts, with some running six and sometimes seven days a week to keep up wih demand.

Senator Rob Portman said in a press release that he asked GM to commit to bringing a new product to the plant.

Unifor, the union that represents GM's hourly workers in Canada, said it "does not accept the closure of the plant as a foregone conclusion".

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Oshawa Mayor John Henry said he had not spoken to anyone from GM.

"We need to make sure that we are well positioned to compete, not just over the next few years, but well beyond", she said.

"We believe in an all-electric future", Ms. Barra said. GM had been expected to close plants because of struggling sales. "As we're transitioning to the new truck architecture", she said.

Second, I want the people of Oshawa and the Durham Region to know that our government will always stand with you. "It would be like breaking up a family". That means GM needs to allocate more resources to purely electric cars, unlike the hybrid Volt, and to autonomous technology, Barra said.

What's more, the Cruze plant just outside Youngtown is in a Democratic and labor stronghold, where Trump won over a surprising number of voters two years ago by reaching out to what he called America's "forgotten men and women". Many of those who will lose jobs are now working on conventional cars with internal combustion engines. Barra said the industry is changing rapidly and moving toward electric propulsion, autonomous vehicles and ride-sharing, and GM must adjust.

Those workers were told this morning that production will end on March 1, and there was no mention of another product being made at the plant. The Lordstown plant makes the Chevy Cruze.

GM is also closing the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant in Detroit and the Lordstown Assembly in Warren, Ohio in 2019. Now the full-electric Chevrolet Bolt can go up to 238 miles on a single charge.

The Monday closure of GM's plant in Oshawa, Ontario, was confirmed late Sunday by an official familiar with the decision.

Dias said the plant has won "every award" and was the best by "every matrix". GM also operates manufacturing facilities in St. Catharines, Ont., and Ingersoll, Ont. They have an 11-month-old at home.

The huge ― and modern ― plant has 2,500 unionized employees and 300 non-union workers.

In 2015, assembly of the Chevrolet Camaro in Oshawa ended and in 2016, assembly of both the Chevrolet Impala and Equinox came to an end.

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