JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Some Jacksonville employees are now joining the frontlines of the national United Auto Workers strike demanding higher wages.
Up to 27 employees were impacted by the strike at the locked Mack Trucks distribution center in Northwest Jacksonville after the union rejected a tentative agreement Sunday. They’re part of nearly 4,000 Mack Trucks employees in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Florida.
“We have families to feed. We have a livelihood. So, we deserve what we’re supposed to get,” Cassandra Williams, the local UAW president, said.
She was on the picket line Monday after the union rejected a tentative agreement Sunday. She said employees want higher wages, a 401K, and cost of living adjustment among other factors.
“You have cost of living rising all the time. But you want to keep us here? There’s so many factors that play in that we all need.”
Mack Trucks president said in a statement, “We are surprised and disappointed that the UAW has chosen to strike, which we feel is unnecessary. We clearly demonstrated our commitment to good faith bargaining by arriving at a tentative agreement that was endorsed by both the International UAW and the UAW Mack Truck Council.”
The tentative agreement originally voted on last week included a 10% general wage increase in year one for all employees and a compounded 20% increase to general wages over five years, Mack Trucks said.
The strike now brings the total to nearly 30,000 striking members across more than 20 states nationwide.
“I’m inspired to see UAW members at Mack Trucks holding out for a better deal, and ready to stand up and walk off the job to win it,” UAW President Shawn Fain said. “The members have the final say, and it’s their solidarity and organization that will win a fair contract at Mack.”
Mack said it is confident it will arrive at an agreement that delivers competitive wages and benefits for all employees.
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