UAW Strike: GM Warns Of Possible Layoffs At KCK Manufacturer

GM Fairfax Assembly located at 3201 Fairfax Trafficway, Kansas City, KS 66115. Photo Credit: Google Maps

Posted September 18, 2023

Updated September 22, 2023

General Motors says a Kansas City, Kansas auto manufacturer could experience layoffs due to the ongoing United Auto Workers strike, citing the shutdown of the Wentzville, Missouri plant as a critical factor.

Following the shutdown of the auto manufacturing plant, Wentzville Assembly, GM released a statement that says the strike would have “a negative ripple effect,” leading to the loss of 2,000 jobs at the Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas, NPR reports.

Due to an expired contract agreement with Fairfax, GM is not responsible for any company-provided compensation for the laid-off workers, the company added.

The UAW President Shawn Fain said the union would provide income to workers affected by the layoffs in a statement released Saturday.

“Let’s be clear: if the Big Three decide to lay people off who aren’t on strike, that’s them trying to put the squeeze on our members to settle for less,” Fain said. “With their record profits, they don’t have to lay off a single employee.”

The UAW strike began last week against the Big Three; General Motors, Ford and Stellantis with the goal of a new contract agreement. The union is asking for a 40 percent wage increase over four years as well as a four-day workweek.

GM Fairfax Assembly On Idle

An official with the Fairfax plant confirmed on Wednesday that the facility is now idle, with its roughly 2,000 workers left with “no work available,” according to a GM spokesperson. Impacted workers are not eligible for any company-provided Sub-pay.

“We have said repeatedly that nobody wins in a strike, and that effects go well beyond our employees on the plant floor and negatively impact our customers, suppliers and the communities where we do business, such as in greater Kansas City,” officials said in a statement Wednesday. “What happened to our Fairfax team members is a clear and immediate demonstration of that fact. We will continue to bargain in good faith with the union to reach an agreement as quickly as possible.”

Fain made an announcement on Wednesday claiming the UAW will continue to strike at more plants across the nation if “serious progress” isn’t made by noon on Friday, Sept. 22, KMBC reported