UAW workers and Mack Trucks reach deal to avoid strike

U.S. President Joe Biden joins United Auto Workers picket line in Belleville, Michigan

U.S. President Joe Biden joins striking members of the United Auto Workers (UAW) on the picket line outside the GM’s Willow Run Distribution Center, in Belleville, Wayne County, Michigan, U.S., September 26, 2023. REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein/File photo Acquire Licensing Rights

Oct 2 (Reuters) – About 4,000 workers represented by the United Auto Workers (UAW) reached an agreement with Volvo Group-owned Mack Trucks just before midnight Eastern Standard Time (0400 GMT) on Sunday, the union and the company said.

The temporary agreement must still be ratified by the UAW.

“The terms of this tentative agreement would deliver significantly increased wages and continue first-class benefits for Mack employees and their families,” Mack President Stephen Roy said in a statement.

The union announced the deal on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter. About 98% of the truck company’s workers had authorized a strike last month, according to the UAW.

The UAW is currently in the third week of an ongoing strike against the Detroit 3 automakers, General Motors (GM.N), Ford and Chrysler parent Stellantis (STLAM.MI).

Should Mack workers have gone on strike, it could have strained the UAW’s limited strike fund.

Workers across industries ranging from airlines to shipping and from retail to entertainment have been pressing for better wages and benefits from large U.S. companies in recent months due to high inflation and low unemployment.

The U.S. labor movement’s efforts have broad national support, with a recent Reuters poll showing a majority of Americans agree with the auto workers’ and Hollywood actors’ aims for better compensation.

Mack, founded in 1900, is one of North America’s largest manufacturers of medium-duty and heavy-duty trucks, engines and transmissions, according to its website. Its trucks are sold in nearly 30 countries.

The company had said on Thursday its bargaining teams had reached tentative agreements but certain discussions were still ongoing.

“While it is true that the parties are currently far apart on the economics, this is not unusual at this point in the negotiations, and we expect progress in the coming days,” Mack had said then.

Volvo (VOLVb.ST) bought Mack in 2000.

Reporting by Jahnavi Nidumolu in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri and Savio D’Souza

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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