WAYNE, Mich. (FOX 2) - If the UAW president deploys more workers to go on strike Friday, its members say they're ready to go the distance.
"Because we're not there yet," said one worker on the Michigan Assembly picket line. "We gotta put everything on the table."
Without serious progress on negotiations between Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis, Shawn Fain could order more disruptions to the industry's supply chain. By then, the strike will have stretched to seven days.
The balance that both the union and the Detroit Big Three have to find is meeting members' demands but also staying competitive with foreign carmakers. That's because UAW members are some of the highest-paid autoworkers in the industry.
"They are buying American-made cars, but they may not be buying UAW made cars," said John McElroy, an auto analyst. He's referring to the customers who may be honking their horns in support of the workers without having paid for a car built by them.
"The Detroit three have significantly higher labor costs than most of their competition in the United States. And as a result, the foreign automakers operating in the US, have nearly 60% of the US market," said McElroy.
And built on top of that is that people who build foreign cars in the U.S. make significantly less than UAW workers.
"If you work at Toyota or Honda or Mercedes or BMW or Hyundai or Kia, or any of them, you earn far less money, far less money than what the UAW workers are being paid," he said.
One of the reasons they haven't joined the UAW is due to its past association with corruption, including in recent years with its former president now in prison for accepting bribes.