Canadian autoworkers have voted in favor of a new three-year contract with General Motors. With over 85% of voters in agreement, the deal will bring back production at the company’s Oshawa, Ontario assembly plant.

The deal between GM and Unifor, which represents the unionized autoworkers, covers 1,700 workers in St. Catharines, Oshawa, and Woodstock, Ontario.

GM’s new planned investments under the agreement will include $1-to-$1.3 billion in Oshawa to bring back production of pick-up trucks. There’s also a $109 million investment in St. Catharines to support added engine and transmission production. A $500,000 injection to operations at the Woodstock Parts Distribution Centre is also planned.

GM Canada President Scott Bell said he expects the investment to be “significant” for Canada’s economy. He believes it “will happen fast and generate thousands of new jobs.”

Demand for pickup trucks remains strong. They accounted for more than 40% of GM Canada’s sales this year. The deal was the final agreement to be negotiated between the union and the big U.S. automaker.

Contract Details

Unifor said the GM contract follows the pattern-setting deal they first reached with Ford. It includes five percent increases to hourly rates, a $7,250 productivity and quality bonus, $4,000 in inflation protection bonuses, improved benefits, shift premiums, and restoration of a 20% wage differential for skilled trades.

The agreement also means that GM workers will have a new racial justice advocate in the workplace. It includes up to 10 paid days of domestic violence leave too. Earlier Unifor deals with Ford and Fiat Chrysler also included promises of billions in new investment in Canada.

In a separate announcement, GM said it will hire 3,000 more technical workers across the company by early next year. That will include 500 to 1,000 remote workers, as well as jobs in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Ontario, and Texas. The company said the jobs will be filled before March 30, 2021.

Ontario is home to GM’s Canadian Technology Centre. It is the largest software engineering and development center for GM outside the United States. Ontario also has GM’s Kapuskasing Cold Weather Development Centre and its McLaughlin Advanced Technology Track.


Devon is a writer, editor, and veteran of the online publishing world. He has a particular love for classic muscle cars.