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Collective Action: Unifor demands more cohesive auto industry strategy by Canadian government

Toronto, Ontario – On Aug. 8, representatives from the Unifor trade union announced a list of recommendations for the Federal and Provincial governments, aimed to promote the interest of auto workers and Canadian businesses in the auto production business.

At the press announcement, recently elected Unifor national president, Lana Payne, explained that these recommendations aimed to address ongoing developments in the auto industry. Many stem from the lack of a central agency or ministry responsible for automotive development, with dozens of individual organizations taking charge with varying levels of coordination.

These include promoting employment from underrepresented groups, ensuring long-term stability for domestic production, electric vehicle infrastructure and production, along with skilled trades education that meets the needs of the industry – areas that will affect the number and types of vehicles arriving at tomorrow’s collision repair shops.

While most recommendations focused on the manufacturing side of the industry, here are some recommendations that may affect collision repairers, recyclers and autobody workers.

  • Recommendation 1: Establish a comprehensive national automotive industrial strategy and program.
  • Recommendation 2: Allocate responsibility for Canada’s auto sector strategy to a dedicated Ministry.
  • Recommendation 5. Focus investment in domestic manufacturing of component parts.
  • Recommendation 9: Encourage end-of-life vehicle and battery recycling.
  • Recommendation 19: Develop a comprehensive national skills assessment and inventory.

These suggestions were compiled with the input of union leaders, board members from the Auto Council, Independent Parts Supplier Council, Unifor leaders, and was written by the Unifor Auto Policy Working Group.

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