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66 Maintenance Workers Lose Jobs At Kansas City, Kansas, GM Plant Due To UAW Strike

The Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas, employs more than 2,400 workers.
The Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas, employs more than 2,400 workers.

In a ripple effect of the General Motors strike, now in its second week, 66 maintenance workers have been laid off from their jobs at the Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas.

Jones Lang LaSalle Americas Inc., a commercial real estate firm that provides maintenance services at the plant, said in a letter to the United Auto Workers that the workers were “not deemed critical to operations during this period of labor unrest.”

The affected employees are represented by the union, which is pushing for higher wages, fewer temporary workers and increased job security, among other issues.

“I can confirm that they are housekeeping-slash-janitorial suppliers at the plant,” said David Barnas, a GM spokesman.

Wednesday was the 10th day of the strike, the first nationwide walkout at GM since 2007 and already the longest against the company since 1970. Some 46,000 workers at more than 30 GM plants have walked off the job.

The Fairfax assembly plant employs more than 2,400 workers and produces the Chevy Malibu sedan and the Cadillac XT4 crossover SUV.  

Jones Lang LaSalle filed a notice last week under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act of 1988 (Warn Act) that it was laying off the janitorial employees.

In its letter to the UAW, which was signed by managing director John M. Krieger, Jones Lang LaSalle also said that “(c)ompanies that are signatory to our agreement will also be laying off their UAW represented employees.”

It’s not clear what other companies the letter was referring to. But in addition to the Fairfax plant, the letter said that affected locations included GM assembly plants in Lansing and Lake Orion, Michigan, and a powertrain plan in Romulus, Michigan.

The layoffs at the Fairfax plant took effect on Sept. 16.

Dan Margolies is a senior reporter and editor at KCUR. You can reach him on Twitter @DanMargolies.

Copyright 2019 KCUR 89.3

Dan Margolies is editor in charge of health news at KCUR, the public radio station in Kansas City. Dan joined KCUR in April 2014. In a long and varied journalism career, he has worked as a reporter for the Kansas City Business Journal, The Kansas City Star and Reuters. In a previous life, he was a lawyer. He has also worked as a media insurance underwriter and project development director for a video production firm.
Dan Margolies
Dan was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. and moved to Kansas City with his family when he was eight years old. He majored in philosophy at Washington University in St. Louis and holds law and journalism degrees from Boston University. He has been an avid public radio listener for as long as he can remember – which these days isn’t very long… Dan has been a two-time finalist in The Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism, and has won multiple regional awards for his legal and health care coverage. Dan doesn't have any hobbies as such, but devours one to three books a week, assiduously works The New York Times Crossword puzzle Thursdays through Sundays and, for physical exercise, tries to get in a couple of rounds of racquetball per week.