General Motors and Unifor have reached a ‘transformation agreement’ to save roughly 300 jobs at the Oshawa assembly plant.
According to a media release, the company plans to invest in excess of $170 million to support a transition of operations at the plant from vehicle assembly to one focused on stamping, related sub-assembly and other miscellaneous activities for GM and other auto industry customers.
GM will also convert part of the Oshawa property into a test track for autonomous and advanced technology vehicles.
“This transformation plan is very significant as it positions Oshawa for a sustainable future. This agreement maximizes the support for our people and their families, and further secures Oshawa as a key in developing vehicles of the future at our new test track,” said GM Canada President and Managing Director Travis Hester
“By maintaining a footprint in Oshawa, and keeping the plant intact, we save hundreds of jobs and this gives us the ability to build and create new jobs in the future. We are in a much better position than we were five months ago when the plant was closing,” added Jerry Dias, national president of Unifor.
The announcement came as welcome news for the provincial government.
“This is good news for the City of Oshawa and all of Durham. We are glad this historic site will continue to be a hub for vehicle parts manufacturing, technological innovation and regional economic growth,” said Todd Smith, minister of economic development, job creation and trade.
“While this agreement is a positive development, many workers still face an uncertain future as the plant scales down. Our government is there for those workers and their families. Our government is working with GM and Unifor to support affected GM employees and their families through its Rapid Re-employment Training Service, with plans for an action centre to open in June.”