Fortitude in the Face of Disruption
As news breaks on the overnight developments in the labor negotiations between the UAW and the Big Three, I take pause to consider the gravity of the situation for our industry, our state, our communities and our citizens.
Our industry struggled hard in 2020 with a global pandemic, wrestled supply chain issues in 2021 and battled workforce gaps in 2023. While 2023 has been a year of progress, a strike could end that cautious optimism immediately, with experts estimating a nationwide economic loss of $5.6 billion for a 10-day strike.
While we strongly encourage and hope for a rapid end to this strike, I am also struck by the confidence I have that Michigan manufacturers will weather this storm.
While our members have faced seemingly endless challenges, they have endured and emerged stronger. The original thinkers and doers, manufacturers have always been proactive in devising and deploying adaptive strategies in response to changing circumstances.
This situation brings to light the importance of our state’s manufacturing sector, a diverse powerhouse responsible for 19.38 percent of gross state product and employment of 620,000 Michigan workers.
It also brings into focus the collective strength and determination that is present in this industry. Our manufacturing excellence has been built on a foundation of resilience and innovation and we will emerge from this uncertainty with a robust and agile fortitude.