UAW Strike Day 36: Stellantis announces more layoffs, solidarity rally in Detroit, and another Fain update

Another 100 layoffs were announced Thursday evening as Stellantis was forced to tell employees at a plant in Toledo, Ohio to not come into work due to a stoppage in production at the company's Jeep plant.

Stellantis layoffs have now climbed to 1,520, including 170 at Toledo Machining Plant, due to facility supplies components for multiple Jeep models reaching the maximum inventory level. This comes after Ford announced its own round of layoffs at Sterling Axle, which feeds the automaker's Kentucky truck plant in Louisville, which the UAW targeted for a strike last week.

The additional layoffs are the latest impact from the union's "Stand Up" strike, which is now on Day 36.

While the union has managed to extract major concessions from the Detroit 3 automakers during contract negotiations, President Shawn Fain said they can afford to pay more to their workers. Now in its second month, some striking workers say they are starting to grow weary of the standoff, while tensions are flaring in other corners of the labor dispute.

Meanwhile, picketing workers continue to show solidarity with other unions that have also gone on strike, most recently between workers and Detroit's three casinos.

RELATED: It's not just layoffs. The economic toll on the industry is also worsening

Layoffs still building

Among Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis, layoffs have eclipsed 6,000 employees.

That figure doesn't include the striking union members, which has now hit 34,000 workers. About half of them are employed at Ford factories, including at the company's truck plant in Louisville, it's largest.

The most recent round of layoffs include 100 at a machining plant in Stellantis, 150 at Sterling Axle from Ford, and more than a dozen at a GM facility in Missouri.


Here's how many autoworkers have been laid off by Detroit's Big Three due to UAW strike

As the UAW strike continues, there are 34,000 members striking against Detroit's Big Three. Meanwhile, Ford, Stellantis, and General Motors have laid off thousands of workers as there's no end in sight to the strike.

Weary workers and rising tensions

While the strike has persisted for more than a month, the limited pay that picketing workers get mixed with the gloomy conditions settling in as the weather gets colder may be feeding more fatigue.

FOX 2 spoke with Darvin Fletcher who works for Ford this week, who said he was growing tired of the picket line at Michigan Assembly in Wayne - the first facility to be hit by the UAW in September.

"Mr. Fain get us back to work! Enough’s enough," Fletcher said. "Morale is down. The first week everybody was gung ho."

He said workers were going financially bankrupt. "We weren’t even getting a full 40 hours a week since, like, May, and now to be handed $500 a week before taxes?! It’s killing us."

There are also continuing tensions between workers and non-union employees that are being impacted by the strike despite not negotiating for a new contract. One video posted on Facebook shows a truck driver threatening to run over protesters in front of Local 1248 in Warren.

Solidarity in Detroit

On Thursday, the Michigan lieutenant governor made a visit to Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit where he spoke to striking workers from several unions. 

With the backdrop of GM's headquarters, Garlin Gilchrist told union members their issues align, even if they are fighting for separate contracts.

"However long it takes, this movement is worth it, because you are worth it," he said.

Besides UAW signs, there were also emblems from the Detroit Casino Council on display. The coalition represents five separate unions that are negotiating with the three casinos in Detroit. They went on strike on Tuesday.


'You are worth it': Lt. Gov Gilchrist fires up striking workers at Detroit picketing march

"Just listening to the health care workers, to the autoworkers, listening to the Blue Cross Blue Shield workers, all of our issues align, they’re the same," said Nia Winston. "That’s what brings us together. That’s the thread that holds us tight."

Another update from Fain

The UAW's Facebook page announced it will hold an update Friday, Oct. 20 at 4 p.m.

President Shawn Fain, which has made Friday news updates with new strikes and contract developments a staple of this round of negotiations, plans to go live again.

According to the post, he'll give bargaining updates. FOX 2 will stream the press conference live.