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United Automotive Workers strike could cost Jacksonville & Florida car owners

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Nearly 13,000 of the United Auto Workers’ 145,000 members have walked off the job, with the union president threatening plenty more on the way if major American automakers don’t meet the worker’s demands.

While the move marks a historic one to fight for autoworker’s rights, it could create a ripple effect throughout the country and even in Jacksonville.

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Tony Masutto, the owner of Everything Automotive in Jacksonville told Action News Jax on Friday that broadening of the current strikes could make car parts harder to find, costing customers more for needed repairs.

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“If you’re not getting the parts made, you’re not getting them built, you’re not getting them supplied... everything increases the price, and it never goes back down,” said Masutto.

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Meanwhile, Masutto said it would also likely add to the already existing backlog of long wait times for repairs.

“We had a Ford, older, six-cylinder engine we waited for four months for a re-manned, re-manufactured to get here,” added Masutto. “If they go on strike, it’s gonna keep making it harder on the people in the end.”

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Even with expected price jumps and wait times for repairs across Florida and the nation following the strikes, Masutto says it’s important for people to not attempt repairs on their own unprepared, as many parts sold online nowadays are counterfeit, with many jobs requiring a professional to complete.

Automakers so far have scoffed at the union’s demands of large raises, a four-day workweek, and an expanded pension program, among other demands.

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