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GM electric vehicle plant votes to join United Auto Workers

Dec. 9 (UPI) — Workers at an Ohio factory that will produce electric vehicle batteries voted on Friday to join the United Auto Workers union.

UAW President Ray Curry welcomed workers from Ultium Cells in Warren, Ohio, in a statement as they voted 710-16 to join the union.

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“As the auto industry transitions to electric vehicles, new workers entering the auto sector at plants like Ultium are thinking about their value and worth. This vote shows that they want to be a part of maintaining the high standards and wages that UAW members have built in the auto industry,” UAW President Ray Curry said in a statement.

Ultium Cells is a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solution. The plant is one of four the two companies expect to open in the United States.

The facility is the first joint-venture EV facility to join the UAW, which plans on recruiting further in the growing sector.

Electric vehicle sales are on pace to eclipse record levels in 2022.

The National Labor Relations Board oversaw the vote and objections can be filed for the next five days. If none are received, results will be certified, followed by collective bargaining.

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The union filed to have an election on behalf of about 900 workers in October.

Ultium Cells will open a plant in Spring Hill, Tenn., late next year. A third plant is under construction in Delta Township near Lansing, Mich., and will open in 2024.

The joint venture is also considering a site in New Carlisle, Ind., for a fourth plant.

“Congratulations to the newest members of the United Auto Workers at the Ultium Cells LLC EV battery plant in Warren, Ohio. I ran for President to rebuild the middle class. The middle class built America – and unions built the middle class,” President Joe Biden said in a White House statement.

“My economic plan is creating good-paying jobs that you can raise a family on — many that don’t require a college degree — and provide the free and fair choice to join a union. By rebuilding our infrastructure and our manufacturing of electric vehicle batteries and semiconductors, these jobs will bring our supply chains back home and tackle the climate crisis at the same time. In my administration, American and union workers can and will lead the world in manufacturing once again.”

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