Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV’s US workers – members of the UAW union – have voted against the proposed four-year deal the carmaker inked with the UAW officials, announced the union.
The proposed deal was rejected soundly by a majority of workers – 65 percent of the approximately 40,000 unionized workers employed at the 37 assembly facilities of FCA in the US, which is the third biggest Detroit automaker. UAW President Dennis Williams has also called Thursday a closed door meeting with 300 officials from FCA union locals to scramble for options. “We will gather the issues together and notify (Fiat Chrysler) that further discussions are needed,” swiftly commented Williams in a statement. The rather unexpected result – it has been decades since the last similar feat – shows the growing discontent among auto workers in the Us industry about their wages, as the auto industry and the Detroit Three have recovered from the financial crisis and are posting both record sales and profits across the US now.
Options include Fiat Chrysler union locals going on strike, the UAW ready to have another round of discussion with FCA or they could simply sidestep the situation and focus on one of the other major Detroit automakers: Ford or General Motors. This is the first time since 1982 a contract negotiated with the automaker that gets a no vote and the first time since 1976 the lead company’s proposed deal is rejected. “The Company will make decisions, as always, based on achieving our industrial objectives, and looks forward to continuing a dialogue with the UAW,” commented FCA in the aftermath of the union workers ratification process.