Canada’s Unifor trade union has recruited musical superstar Sting to help its fight to save the General Motors Oshawa Assembly plant in northeast Toronto.
Sting is currently in Toronto starring in his musical, The Last Ship, and will pay a visit to Oshawa on Thursday for a short performance, Automotive News reports. Unifor has paid to rent the Oshawa facility for the performance but Sting and the rest of The Last Ship cast will perform free of charge.
General Motors intends on closing the Oshawa Assembly plant at the end of 2019 in a move which will cost thousands of jobs. Unifor alone represents 2600 hourly employees at the site. Production at Oshawa is currently moving along at 30 per cent capacity, building approximately 250 Cadillac XTS and Chevrolet Impala vehicles daily. The site also finishes assembly of 450 GMC Sierra and Chevrolet Silverado models daily.
Sting’s The Last Ship is based around the musician’s experience of his local shipyard shutting down and crippling the community. Unifor president Jerry Dias says the musical depicts a scenario very similar to what could happen in Oshawa.
“With the departure of shipbuilding from his hometown, Sting witnessed first-hand what becomes of workers and their families when the core industry is ripped away,” Dias said.