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NUMMI UAW Local Votes to Take Toyota Severance

Toyota offer was contingent on a gag order that looks to prevent free speech. Union workers had little choice.

by on Mar.18, 2010

Toyota moves production to a non-union plant even though California is its largest U.S. market.

About 4500 members of UAW Local 2244 voted today to accept a $281-million severance pay package offered by Toyota, which is closing New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. on April 1. Ratification was approved by 90%.

It is the only auto assembly plant in Toyota’s largest market in the United States.  (Click Here for Toyota Sweetens NUMMI Closure Severance)

The joint venture between Toyota and General Motors was making  the Toyota Corolla sedan and Tacoma compact pickup truck. Production of the Pontiac Vibe ceased there last August.

NUMMI repeatedly won J.D. Power  awards for quality.

Production is being moved to a non-union plant in Texas. Tens of thousands of jobs at the plant and its suppliers will be eliminated. The severance package only applies to union members.

Part of the Toyota offer stipulated a gag order.

“I believe (it) violates our First Amendment rights under the U.S. Constitution, and our rights to Freedom of Association under the Labor Rights Conventions of the United Nations’ International Labor Organization (ILO),” says local 2244 President Sergio Santos.   (more…)