POLITICS

CAW, mayor discuss lobbying for national auto policy

09/27/2012 01:09 EDT | Updated 11/27/2012 05:12 EST
The Canadian Auto Workers union says Windsor Mayor, Eddie Francis, has agreed to help lobby provincial and federal governments to work together on attracting new automotive investment.

Francis met with Chris Taylor, president of CAW Local 200, which represents Ford workers.

"I told him that we're going to need him to be an advocate, not only for potential investment help, but also around the auto policy and strategy that they've already accepted as a resolution within city council," Taylor said.

Taylor said all levels of government need to provide assistance, whether it be incentives or other measures, to lure new investment.

Taylor also said Canada still needs an automotive policy.

"From here, I'm going to get in touch with our local MPs and MPPs ... and start the conversations there," Taylor said.

The CAW and Chrysler agreed to a new four-year contract Wednesday night. The agreement does not include new investment from the automaker.

At the news conference announcing the deal, national union president Ken Lewenza called on the provincial and federal government to assist the auto industry.

"You need the market, but you also need the tools of government," Lewenza said. "We need a government that provides the same tools as other countries to preserve this very important industry."

He said the government needs to "work effectively and aggressively" to win auto investment.

Caw Local 200 claims it has a commitment from Ford that if the automaker decides to build a new engine product in North America, Windsor will be at the top of the investment list.

According to the union, Ford agreed to create 600 new jobs in Canada as part of the next collective agreement. Thirty-five of those jobs will be in Windsor.