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Strike ends: UAW ratifies contract

ROANOKE, Ind. (WPTA21) – A majority of workers have ratified a proposed contract, ending the UAW strike against General Motors.

Union members voted 57.2% in favor of a new contract with the company, bringing an immediate end to a contentious 40-day strike.

“General Motors members have spoken,” said Terry Dittes, UAW Vice President and Director of the UAW-GM Department. “We are all so incredibly proud of UAW-GM members who captured the hearts and minds of a nation. Their sacrifice and courageous stand addressed the two-tier wages structure and permanent temporary worker classification that has plagued working class Americans.”

While the decision was clear on a wider scale, it was less so locally, where workers at the Fort Wayne Assembly were nearly split.

Earlier in the day, members of Local 2209, based in Allen County, approved the contract by the narrowest of margins — 50.8 percent in favor; 49.1 percent opposed.

A majority of Local 2209 production workers actually voted against the deal, but strong support by skilled trade workers and others gave the “yes” vote the eventual edge.

RELATED: Local 2209 UAW narrowly accepts new contract, national vote totals expected Friday evening

In recent days, vote results have trickled in from union locals across the country.

Striking workers at the General Motors factory with the most employees on Friday handily agreed to the contract. Production workers at GM’s SUV plant in Arlington, Texas, voted 78% in favor, while skilled trades voted 60% for the contract.

Arlington is the United Auto Workers union’s largest GM local, representing more than 5,000 people.

Elsewhere, Local 598 in Flint, Mich., voted 61 percent to 39 percent in favor. Local 1097 in Rochester, NY, overwhelmingly supported the deal, with 83 percent of members approving.

Jonathan Shelley

Jonathan Shelley is the news director at WPTA TV, which he joined in 2016 following nine years in a similar role in New Orleans and previous news management positions in Oklahoma City and Las Vegas.

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