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UAW-GM strike agreement seems close, but don't count on it just yet

Evie Fordham

Negotiations to end the United Auto Workers strike against General Motors seem to be progressing, but interested parties cannot bank on an end to the strike just yet, Kristin Dziczek of the Center for Automotive Research told FOX Business on Thursday.

Talks between GM and UAW progressed to the "Main Table" stage this week. Dziczek cited GM's agreement to pick up the tab for hourly employees' health care once more as a "positive sign" for a potential deal as well as for workers in the meantime.

"It was really confusing to workers, they didn't know who was covering their health care. It seemed like some providers and insurers did not understand that when workers were on strike, the union would pick up the cost of health care," she said.

GM's reinstatement of workers' health care can be seen as de-escalation, and it's also a good sign that neither party has broken off talks, even though they have stretched into nights and weekends, Dziczek said.

"Another thing to keep an eye on is what [UAW members] might be doing once they reach a tentative agreement. Will they go back to work immediately or stay out?" Dziczek said.

"Normally, when they reach a tentative agreement, they go back to work. This council could vote to stay out on strike while they consider ratification. That is an extra measure of caution just in case members vote this down," she said, adding that UAW Fiat Chrysler Automobiles employees voted one down in 2015.

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