His office at the union’s famed Solidarity House in Detroit still holds a jumble of unpacked boxes, some filled with contract materials from past negotiations.Around the room are placards with inspirational phrases: the “Believe” sign from the popular TV show “Ted Lasso,” which he watches with his 31-year-old daughter, and another that reads: “I don’t sugar coat s—. I’m not Willy Wonka.”
[Fain] has insisted that workers should be sharing in the success of companies that have earned billions of dollars in profits each year. Members spent much of the Covid-19 pandemic working long days on assembly lines, Fain has argued, while corporate workers had the flexibility to clock in from home.In recent weeks, he has been unusually outspoken about his frustrations with labor talks—at one point, making a public show of throwing Stellantis’s bargaining proposals in the trash—and has embraced fiery rhetoric that has riled up workers for a potential walkout and taken many auto executives aback.Fain disclosed Thursday evening that the UAW had filed complaints with the National Labor Relations Board alleging that GM and Stellantis have been negotiating in bad faith, which the filings said amounted to an unfair labor practice. It is highly unusual for the UAW to make such a complaint at this stage of talks.Both companies denied the allegations.At an event in March he said the union was fighting its “one and only true enemy: multibillion-dollar corporations.”Under Fain, the union has brought forward a set of demands that includes winning back benefits that workers gave up in past talks to help the companies survive (emphasis added).