WISCREPORT.COM (10/27/07) - UAW members have voted to ratify a new collective bargaining agreement with Chrysler LLC.The new contract covers approximately 45,000 active workers at Chrysler and more than 55,000 Chrysler retirees and 23,000 surviving spouses. It will expire on Sept. 14, 2011. A union spokesperson says, even though negotiating took place during a difficult time for the auto industry, the agreement secures jobs and wages and protects health care and pension benefits.
The vote was 56 percent in favor of the four-year pact among production workers, and 51 percent in favor among skilled trades workers.
Ninety-four percent of office and clerical workers voted in favor of the agreement, and 79 percent of UAW-represented Chrysler engineering workers approved the contract.
The union reached a tentative agreement with Chrysler on Oct. 10, following a six-hour nationwide strike against the company.
“Our members had to face some tough choices, and we had a solid, democratic debate about this contract,” UAW President Ron Gettelfinger said.
“Now we’re going to come together as a union -- and now it’s on the company to move ahead, increase their market share and continue to build great cars and trucks here in the U.S,” Gettelfinger continued.
“There’s no question this was a difficult set of negotiations during difficult times for the U.S. auto industry,” said UAW Vice President General Holiefield, who heads the union’s Chrysler Department.
“With the support of our membership and local leadership, we have an agreement that secures jobs and wages and protects health care and pension benefits,” Holiefield said.
Chrysler LLC today confirmed the new Chrysler-UAW 2007 national labor agreement, in response to the UAW's ratification results.
"We are pleased that our UAW employees recognize that the new agreement meets the needs of the company and its employees by providing a framework to improve our long-term manufacturing competitiveness," said Tom LaSorda, Vice Chairman and President, Chrysler LLC.
Chrysler LLC, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., produces Chrysler, Jeep®, Dodge and Mopar® brand vehicles and products. Total sales worldwide in 2006 were 2.7 million vehicles.
Sales outside of North America were the highest in a decade with an increase of 15 percent over 2005.
On the heels of the company's record product launch year (Chrysler launched 10 all-new vehicles in 2006), the company extended that streak with eight all-new products in 2007.
Its produce lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300, Jeep Commander and Dodge Charger.
Chrysler is a unit of Cerberus Capital Management.