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UAW leader wants one health plan for all employees

Jun 18, 2015

UAW President Dennis Williams told reporters Thursday the union wants to lower health care costs.
Credit Rebecca Kruth

The president of the UAW Thursday said the union is considering ways to cut health care costs for members.

Dennis Williams told reporters in Detroit the union is considering a health care pool that would put its nearly 140,000 active workers under a single plan.

"The more people that pool together in this health care system, the more leverage you have with institutions such as hospitals and clinics and insurance companies," Williams said.

Williams said the pool could also include around 155,000 salaried workers.

Currently, members are insured through their employers.

In addition to reducing health care costs, Williams also vowed to address wage disparity between entry-level and veteran employees when the UAW heads to the bargaining table next month. 

Pay for entry-level employees at GM, Ford, and Fiat-Chrysler caps out around $19 per hour.

"I've made it clear since Day One that we're going to bridge that gap," Williams said. "'Entry' means that there is a way to get to the top."

Current UAW contracts covering wages and benefits are set to expire in September.