Mercedes-Benz ratify new agreement ending strike action

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Members outside at Mercedes-Benz dealership in midtown Toronto wave Unifor flags and their fits in the air on a sunny day.

Unifor Local 252 members at four Mercedes-Benz dealership locations in the GTA have ratified new collective agreements, bringing their strike action to an end.

Members at the Mercedes-Benz Etobicoke and Midtown Toronto dealerships, owned by the Zanchin Automotive Group ratified on May 16 with 86% voting in favour. Members at the Mercedes-Benz Downtown Toronto and Thornhill dealerships, owned by the AWIN Auto Group, ratified on May 24 with 70% support.

“Our members stood firm with their bargaining committees and worked together to keep the two agreements as similar as possible while fighting off a list of concessions,” said Eamonn 

Clarke, President of Local 252. 

Following more than a year of negotiations with their employer, the workers began legal strike action on May 11, 2023, after rejecting offers that were not recommended by the union’s bargaining committees. The approximately 170 members work as Motor Vehicle Technicians, Parts Advisors, Car Prep and Car Jockeys, Parts Advisors, Car Prep and Car Jockeys at the dealerships.

Highlights of the new collective agreements include: 

  • Wage increases for all classifications
  • Cap for early retirement bridge raised to 25 years
  • DB Pension maintained
  • New scope and recognition language
  • Letter of understanding specifying no plant closure or relocation over the life of the agreement
  • Three-year grow in for parts helpers to parts advisor
  • Elimination of lowest classification of car jockey helper
  • Signing bonus of $2,000

Unifor continues to call for regulation of the auto dealership sector to combat wage differentials for Skilled Trades and Technician work from dealership to dealership and the ongoing issue of unpaid time when waiting for work to come in.

“Uniting our members at four dealership locations with two owner groups is a key step to raising standards across the sector,” said Clarke. “I want to thank our members and the bargaining committees for coming together to push for change.”