GM Is Trying to Stop a Canadian Union From Airing a Super Bowl Commercial

February 3, 2019, 9:32 PM UTC

Super Bowl commercials have proven to be a source of entertainment during one of television’s biggest events of the year. General Motors, however, is trying to stop a commercial before it appears during the big game, as the Associated Press reports.

Unifor, a general trade union based in Canada, has pre-released a 30-second ad titled “GM leaves Canadians Out In the Cold” referencing the company’s November 2018 decision to close the Oshawa Assembly plant in Ontario, leaving about 2,600 workers with no jobs.

The ad that is scheduled to appear on Canadian TV stations during the Super Bowl, calling the company’s move “un-Canadian as the vehicles they now want to sell to us” as GM continues to expand in Mexico.

“Clearly General Motors doesn’t want Canadians to see this ad,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias in a statement. “To see its actions and the damage that GM plans to inflict on workers, communities and our national economy if it closes Oshawa.”

Dias received a letter from GM lawyers “demanding that Unifor cease and desist from any further communication of the advertisement” and gave them a deadline of Saturday to stop promoting the ad. The letter states that the ad “clearly promotes Unifor’s business interests” and is tarnishing GM’s reputation.

“The ad points out that Canadians have been loyal to GM and now the company is leaving us out in the cold,” said Dias. “We stand by the belief that if GM wants to sell here then it needs to build here and we will not be intimidated from sharing that message with Canadians in this ad.”

Unifor’s campaign #SaveOshawaGM is looking for GM to take back their decision to close the plant. The union is also asking Canadians to boycott Mexican-made GM vehicles, as well as check their Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to “ensure that they are buying Canadian and U.S. union-made vehicles.”

The Ontario plant is one of five factories in the U.S. and Canada that the company is closing to have an annual savings of about $6 billion by 2020.

Watch Unifor’s ad below.