PULASKI COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — United Auto Workers (UAW) members at Volvo Trucks North America’s New River Valley plant in Dublin voted again Wednesday on a contract they rejected last week, deciding to ratify the common overall agreement and hourly agreement, as well as suspend the strike.
The workers had been on strike since April, rejecting three agreements negotiated by the UAW. They were told this last tentative agreement was the best and final offer.
“The democratic process played out at Volvo Trucks. UAW Members stood together through their strike and now the overall agreement and hourly agreement have been ratified despite the company’s actions earlier in the week,” said Ray Curry, President of the UAW and Director of the Heavy Truck Department, in a statement on Wednesday, July 14.
Curry also says the UAW Constitution provides for an established process that will work to address members’ concerns over the salary agreement which narrowly failed.
According to the UAW, the six-year agreement eliminates the second tier, protects health care premiums for the life of the agreement, provides protections around shift scheduling and plant operations, and provides a major signing bonus and annual wage improvements for every year of the agreement.
“Local 2069 members and their families have received an outpouring of support from the community and supporters throughout the United States and other countries,” said Mitchell Smith, Director of UAW Region 8. “It is not easy to strike and that support sustained our members and their families.”
“This agreement allows us to continue providing our employees with a great quality of life, with guaranteed wage growth and excellent benefits,” said NRV truck assembly operations Vice President and General Manager Franky Marchand. “It will also help secure the plant’s long-term growth and sustainability. Our focus now will be on getting trucks to customers as quickly as we can, and strengthening our relationship with our employees.”
Approximately 2,900 of the NRV plant’s 3,300 employees are members of UAW Local #2069. Those members are set to return to work on their Sunday and Monday shifts.