VIDEO: GM To Close Oshawa Plant, Four Others in US


General Motors will close its production plant in Oshawa, Ont., along with four facilities in the U.S. as part of a global reorganization that will see the company focus on electric and autonomous vehicle programs.

The auto company has announced the closures as part of a sweeping strategy to transform its product line and manufacturing process in order to meet changing demand in the transportation industry, a plan it says will save the company $6-billion by the year 2020.

GM will reduce salaried and salaried contract staff by 15%, which includes 25% fewer executives.

Monday morning, dozens of workers were seen walking out of the Oshawa Assembly Plant with some saying their unhappy with news of the planned closure.

The union representing workers, Unifor, says there is no product allocation to the Oshawa plant past December 2019, affecting more than 2,500 who belong to Unifor Local 222.

Other North American plants without products include assembly plants in Detroit and Lordstown, Ohio.  Transmission factories in Warren, Mich., as well as Baltimore, Maryland are also affected, totalling 6,000 factory workers.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan calls the news "troubling," and says he has spoken to United Auto Workers President Gary Jones and the city's economic development team.

Duggan says they're working together to come up with a solution that works for GM and the employees.

He says "there is strong demand for manufacturing space in Detroit and we are willing to work with GM to fill all the available manufacturing space at Poletown with either GM-related entities or other companies."