Production workers at Warren Truck support FCA wage deal

29 Sep 2015


The tentative four-year contract between the United Auto Workers and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles received a fresh lease of life, with a narrow majority of production workers at Warren Truck Plant voting in favour of the deal.

The Metro Detroit facility has a workforce of over 4,000 hourly workers with 53 per cent of production employees and 36 per cent of skilled trades workers backing the pact, The Detroit News which obtained voting results reported.

The result comes after a number of Fiat Chrysler facilities, including Jefferson North Assembly on Friday, had rejected the deal.

The vote split in Warren comes as a small victory for supporters of the deal and with three other large facilities to vote through tomorrow, there remained a chance of the deal being ratified, as Warren Truck joined at least one engine plant and some salaried local unions that were believed to have supported the deal.

''I hear a lot of people complaining about it, but I'm all for it,'' said John Versace, an entry-level worker at Warren Truck who voted yesterday. ''I see nothing but gains.''

The UAW struggled to receive support from about 40,000 Fiat Chrysler workers that it represented at 37 different UAW local units across the nation with only two days to go for national voting.

Melvin Thompson, a worker at Warren Truck and a former elected official at UAW Local 140, said he was surprised by the results that were announced as the plant was expected to lose the Ram 1500 pickup and would instead make the Jeep Grand Wagoneer starting in 2018, Detroit Free Press reported.

Meanwhile, at Mack Avenue Engine Complex in Detroit, 51 per cent of production workers voted in favour of the contract while 66 per cent of skilled trades workers voted against, according to a person briefed on the results who was not authorised to speak publicly.

Fiat Chrysler and the UAW reached a tentative agreement for a new four-year contract on 15 September, a majority of the automaker's workers represented by the UAW must approve deal to make it official.

A tentative contract agreement reached yesterday between the United Auto Workers (UAW) and Fiat Chrysler addresses pay and health care issues, but neither side would give specifics about the pact. (See: United Auto Workers, Fiat Chrysler strike deal)

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