#25. Develop a sector-based bargaining framework for the automotive parts industry
Standardized work conditions, such as wages and benefits across a targeted sector, provide a measure of stability and security for workers, particularly within a heavily pressurized and cost-competitive auto parts industry. Unlike in the auto assembly sector, comprised of a handful of original equipment manufacturers whose wages and benefits are generally aligned, and follow the terms of the “master” settlement negotiated by Unifor, the parts industry represents a range of large top tier firms and smaller second tier firms. As a result, hourly rates of pay are scattered, ranging from minimum wage to more than $30 per hour depending on the supplier, as are benefits, premium rates, and other employment terms. Following the lead of other automaking countries, including those in Europe, governments in Canada must explore the merits of a sector-wide collective bargaining framework intended to support workers, create cost certainty for suppliers and eliminate the incentive to cut labour costs as a means to attract investment.