It was reached just after the midnight deadline, but a tentative deal with Unifor Tuesday morning has averted a potential strike by General Motors workers in Oshawa, St. Catharines, and Woodstock.
The union’s committee is unanimously recommending workers sign off on the agreement, which will be put to a ratification vote this weekend.
It includes wage increases, signing bonuses and lump sum payments for employees.
“This agreement provides increases for our members, it provides most importantly job security in an industry that has been lacking security for years,” said Unifor president Jerry Dias.
He added a key feature of the four-year deal is keeping the Oshawa plant open.
“The commitment to Oshawa is hundreds of millions of dollars, therefore our fear of a closure in 2019 is now over,” Dias said. “The facilities clearly have a bright future.”
Dias said the investment will mean Oshawa will be the “first and only plant in North America” to be able to build both cars and trucks.
The agreement will also reportedly bring unspecified production from Mexico to St. Catharines, and secure investment for the G-M parts distribution centre in Woodstock.
All three cities will hold ratification votes on Sunday.
In a statement early Tuesday morning, G-M Canada said it will be “working with government on potential support,” but wouldn’t go into specifics.
GM said the deal would “enable significant new product, technology and process investments” at the two Ontario plants, adding “we will be working with government on potential support.”
Unifor identified GM as the first target for contract talks, which will also include Ford and Fiat Chrysler. The union wanted to use any agreement as a benchmark with the other automakers.
Unifor has not identified which one it will negotiate with next.