Nearly 3,600 UAW-Affiliated Mack Truck Workers Strike Against Low Wages, Lack of Benefits

This is the first strike to occur at Mack Trucks in over three decades.

Mack Truck UAW Strike 2019 Oct
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General Motors isn’t the only major automaker dealing with striking employees. Nearly 3,600 United Auto Workers members at Volvo-owned Mack Trucks walked off the job for the first time in 35 years this last Saturday at six locations across three different states.

According to the official news release on the UAW’s website, the strike is to protest unfair pay, compensation, and benefits for workers and their families. The locations of the walkouts mainly occurred at the Local 677 union in Allentown and Middletown, Pennsylvania; unions Local 171 and 1247 in Hagerstown, Maryland; Local 2301 in Baltimore, Maryland; and Local 2420 in Jacksonville, Florida.

“UAW members get up every day and put in long, hard hours of work from designing to building Mack trucks,” said Ray Curry, secretary-treasurer of the UAW and director of the heavy truck department, in the official statement. “UAW members carry on their shoulders the profits of Mack and they are simply asking for dignity, fair pay and job protections.”

The issues mainly revolve around failing to meet an agreement while renegotiating contract terms. This includes an alleged lack of wage increases, job security, fair holiday and vacation downtime, workplace health and safety, healthcare, and retirement options.

According to The Morning Call, it was announced that the UAW Mack Truck Council voted in a strike on Sept. 20 to begin at 11:59 p.m. Saturday, asking union workers to walk off the job and to go home. It then requested the workers return at 8 a.m. Sunday to protest with picket signs in front of the location.

It’s the first strike to happen at Mack Trucks since 1984, which is when around 9,200 workers walked off the job while the UAW and manufacturer renegotiated contracts. The situation remains almost the same with the latest walk-out as the two firms continue to renegotiate contract agreements.