GM in Spring Hill to lay off 525 workers, eliminate 3rd shift
James Bennett - Columbia Daily Herald
June 24, 2020
General Motors said Wednesday it intends to file a WARN notice with the state about a layoff at the Spring Hill Manufacturing Facility.
The elimination of the third shift permanently will force out 525 production and skilled traders workers and 155 temporary employees, United Auto Workers Local 1853 Chairman Mike Herron told members.
Those laid off will not necessarily be third-shift workers, Herron said. Employees with the highest seniority will be protected and moved to either first or second shift.
GM will finalize the layoff by July 31, he added.
“Right now, as of this minute, the cutoff is July 2016,” Herron said of the seniority date. “The company has a responsibility to determine a specific date, as this is only approximate. “
Herron said it was heartbreaking for him to notify his 3,400 members of the impending reduction in force.
“All of the affected team members have done a phenomenal job building cars at Spring Hill Manufacturing,” Herron said in a message to UAW members. “You are world-class workers, and I pray that this layoff will be short in duration and that this economy will eventually rebound creating a need for the return of third shift.
“The union will continue to represent you and work to support you during this layoff. May God Bless you and your families.”
A GM spokesperson said slower sales and a sagging economy forced the decision. Workers produce the Cadillac XT5, Cadillac XT6 and GMC Acadia in Spring Hill.
“Today’s market conditions continue to evolve as we see the impact of COVID-19,” Communications Manager Katy Teer said. “We believe the best way to react to this unforeseen change in our market is to reduce output and operate on two shifts effective immediately.
“This adjustment allows the plant to maintain stable production, protect the value of our brands in any sales environment, and to provide the smallest impact to plant employment going forward,” she added.