GM 'Reorganization' Includes Plant Closures, Layoffs

April FrancisNov 27, 2018

The list of assembly plants that will be "unallocated" next year includes the Oshawa factory in Ontario, Detroit-Hamtramck in MI and Lordstown in Ohio.

General Motors announced a major restructuring of its global business, shutting production at five facilities in North America and slashing its staff. GM said it will reduce its salaried workforce by 15%, including a quarter of the company's executives.

Detroit-Hamtramck employs a total of 1,542 workers, building the Chevrolet Volt, Chevrolet Impala, Buick LaCrosse, Cadillac CT6.

GM has offered buyouts to 18,000 retirement-eligible workers with a dozen or more years of service. GM did not say the plants would close - it used the term "unallocated" - but sources tell the Globe and Mail the Oshawa facility will close, eliminating more than 2,500 jobs.

At the time of the transfer, Dias said Carlisle's appointment to lead Cadillac would raise his profile and influence within GM's headquarters in Detroit, and that "would be a huge benefit for us".

"These actions will increase the long-term profit and cash generation potential of the company and improve resilience through the cycle", says GM CEO Mary Barra. GM had been expected to close plants because of struggling sales.

While the company has said that it believes tariffs on steel and aluminum will add about $1 billion in costs over the next year, there is little sign that the layoffs and closures are related to the tariffs. He said he told the company that the US has done a lot for GM and that if its cars aren't selling, the company needs to produce ones that will. The company has been making cars there for 65 years, and is still pumping out models such as the Chevrolet Impala.

"I promise you they will be back on their feet", Ford told the Ontario legislature.

The GM plant in Oshawa is closing.

As for General Motors, Ford said he found out about the plant closure on Sunday afternoon.

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GM said it has no plans to make automobiles at three factories in Oshawa, Ont., Detroit and Warren, Ohio, as well as parts plants in Maryland and MI.

Both U.S. vehicle assembly plants scheduled to stop production next year now build slow-selling passenger cars.

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".

John Henry, the mayor of Oshawa, said early on Monday on Twitter that he hadn't talked to GM yet, and that a meeting was scheduled to begin at 09:30 a.m. Ontario time between the management and workers.

GM also said it will end operations at two unnamed plants outside North America next year, in addition to a previously announced shutdown in South Korea.

GM confirmed Monday it would close its Oshawa plant in 2019, throwing about 3,000 unionized people out of work.

The full closure of the Oshawa plant will leave 2,500 unionized workers and 300 salaried employees out of work, with indirect effects rippling across the southern Ontario auto industry and beyond.

This announcement comes less than a week after the Drive It Home campaign, which was a call to GM to reinvigorate production in the Lordstown plant.

Lordstown, which has dropped from three shifts to one in recent years, exclusively produces the Chevrolet Cruze.

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