GM and Unifor announce 300 jobs will be saved at Oshawa plant

It was a bittersweet announcement as GM Canada and Unifor announced 300 jobs would be saved at the GM plant in Oshawa.

General Motors is investing $170 million to switch the factory to a stamping and sub-assembly facility handling 50 aftermarket component sets including doors and roofs, quarter panelling, and trunks.

Part of the Oshawa property will also be converted into a test track for autonomous vehicles.

Unifor National President Jerry Dias acknowledged the 300 jobs saved were only a fraction of the workforce, but says this is only the beginning.

"This announcement, though it may not have a lot of jobs as we sit here today in May, there's going to be a heck of a lot more in December, there will be more next year, there will be more in the year after as we continue to attract work."

He added that he is worried for the community of Oshawa, but notes the union was facing an uphill battle and was running out of time.

"What I do know is you play the cards you're dealt, and you make the best of a bad situation. And I will suggest that instead of us facing a hard closure in December of this year, we have discussed and secured, and we have an understanding between the parties of a long term commitment. And that's better, I will argue, than where we were heading."

In November, the automaker announced plans to shutter the facility, leaving 2,600 people out of work.