The troubling signs are gathering for the proposed four-year UAW contract with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles as company workers at Jefferson North Assembly in Detroit have rejected the deal.
This could severely impact the chances of approval on a nationwide level after the workers at Fiat Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant have resoundingly voted against the four-year prospective deal between the UAW union and the carmaker. The UAW Local 7 has workers building the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango at the Detroit assembly factory, with 66 percent of production workers and 77% of skilled trades workers voting against the deal. The proposal was inked earlier this month by FCA chief executive Sergio Marchionne and UAW President Dennis Williams and so far – with just one-third of the workforce yet to vote – most of the bigger UAW units have given a negative vote. More so, the margin has been growing as the ratification process approaches its conclusion. For the deal to pass, a majority of at least 40,000 workers from 37 UAW units have to approve the deal in a ratification process scheduled to go through Wednesday.
If the contract proposal is rejected the UAW contract negotiations with the Detroit Three would see increased turmoil and the union would have to choose between trying to return to the negotiations room with FCA, call a strike or refocus on the agreements with Ford and General Motors. Workers are deeply concerned about the envisioned lack of clarity when it comes to the carmaker’s product development strategy and the lack of detail from the UAW about the newly established health care cooperative.