UAW Sends Tentative Fiat Chrysler Labor Deal to Members for Ratification

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

Plenty of planks found in the quickly hammered out UAW-Ford contract can be found in the tentative deal forged between the United Auto Workers and Fiat Chrysler. Following approval from the National UAW-FCA Council, the agreement reached last weekend goes to members for final approval (or rejection) on Friday.

The two sides reached an agreement far quicker than some predicted, but the final word on the deal will come from workers.

From Cindy Estrada, director of the union’s FCA department:

“This pattern agreement lifts all current full-time employees to top pay in four years; provides parity on health care for all in-progression employees; provides a pathway to full-time status and eventually top pay for all temporary employees; prescription drug coverage for temporary employees; a $9,000 signing bonus for traditional members and a $3,500 signing bonus for temporary members; enhanced the profit sharing formula by 12.5% and created over 7,900 jobs from over $9 billion in investment – including $4.5 billion in newly announced projects.”

Under the tentative agreement, workers hired during the last eight years would receive the same healthcare benefits as long-time employees. Matching the deals reached with Ford and General Motors, the agreement would provide a 4-percent bonus this year and next, with an annual 3-percent bonus slated for the remainder of the contract period.

Profit-sharing checks would rise to $900 for every 1 percent of the automaker’s North American profit margin, which is up $100 from the previous contract.

And of that investment total, $7.8 billion would flow into FCA’s U.S. assembly plants. Much of that sum has already been announced (read more about the automaker’s Michigan plant plans and Jeep portfolio expansion here.)

During the latest contract talks, FCA was under pressure to do more for new and temporary workers — a class of employee FCA relies on far more than its Detroit rivals. The contents of the tentative agreement means Fiat Chrysler would lose much of its long-held labor cost advantage over GM and Ford.

[Image: Fiat Chrysler]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • Lou_BC I suspect that since the global pandemic, dealerships have preferred to stay with the "if you want it, we will order it" business model. They just need some demo models on hand and some shiny bits to catch the impulse buyer. Profits are higher and risks lower this way.
  • Probert When I hear the word "patriot", I think of entitled hateful whining ignorant traitors to democracy. But hey , meant to say "Pass the salt."
  • Lou_BC A brand or inanimate object isn't patriotic. A person can buy said object based upon patriotism. I'd prefer to buy local or domestic. Is supporting one's fellow countrymen patriotic or logical? I'd rather buy from an allie than a foe. Is that patriotic or logical?
  • Ajla I don't have any preference on vehicle assembly beyond that it not be built in a handful of certain nations that I don't like for nonautomotive reasons. However, I don't think the "patriotism" survey had as much to do with assembly as it did with iconography. Which might be a more interesting question.
  • Verbal "Automakers also appear to be continuing to push higher-priced vehicles with larger margins, rather than trying to meet demand for their more-affordable models."What more-affordable models would those be? In the case of the domestics, there aren't any. They cut almost all of their passenger car lines to focus on high-margin pickups and SUVs. On one level this makes sense. If I earn low margins on some of the vehicles I make and high margins on others, just stop making the low margin ones and the problem is solved, right? Except the average buyer can't afford, nor do they even want, to buy an $80,000 truck.
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