Third shift at Windsor Assembly Plant extended until end of 2019: Unifor
Ricardo Veneza, CTV Windsor
Published Wednesday, August 14, 2019 2:35PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, August 14, 2019 6:38PM EDT
A glimmer of hope for 1,500 workers on the third shift at the Windsor Assembly Plant and the hundreds of employees at local feeder plants.
Unifor officials say the third shift has been extended until at least the end of 2019, making it public on Twitter:
Unifor Local 444 president Dave Cassidy tells CTV News the extension has been well-received by its members on the line at the plant.
"People are excited, they're ecstatic," says Cassidy. "It gives people more hope."
On March 28, FCA Canada announced 1,500 workers at the assembly plant would lose their jobs with the elimination of the third shift.
It was first expected to take place on Sept. 30, but got pushed back to Oct. 21. Now the union says workers will get at least two more months.
"If we're going to extend it then it buys us time, it buys us more time to try to come to some final resolve," says Cassidy.
The plant currently employs 6,000 workers and produces nearly 1,500 minivans a day when operating at full volume.
Unifor did announce in April that FCA is investing $355 million in the Windsor Assembly Plant in the hopes of landing a new product.
But the automaker has made no official announcement.
According to Cassidy, the extension announced on Wednesday is tied to sales; however, he stresses the union continues to fight for a new product at the plant as part of the effort to save the third shift long-term.
"We looked at our stats, we looked at our numbers, we looked at forecasts, we looked at potentials, this and that but, make no mistakem we need a new product at Windsor Assembly Plant," says Cassidy.
The Windsor Assembly Plant underwent a $1 billion retooling in 2015 to start building the Chrysler Pacifica.