This month the negotiations for the upcoming next four year labor contracts are kicking off between the United Auto Workers union and the three largest US automakers.
According to numerous opinions, the talks between the US labor union and third biggest US carmaker, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV are seen the hottest. The UAW team will seek a pay increase for the veteran workers, who reside at the $28 hourly rate for almost a decade, but also try and bridge the gap for the Tier Two employees that make up almost 50 percent of the FCA US workforce, the biggest tally among the three automakers. On the other side of the fence sits FCA chief executive officer Sergio Marchionne, who looks heavily interested in securing a merger for the company, claiming it need the help of a larger peer just to remain competitive in the industry in the coming years. “There seems to be greater discontent among workers at FCA,” comments Kristin Dziczek, director of the Industry & Labor Group at the Center for Automotive Research.
According to reports, the UAW would see the second tier entirely eliminated and all workers jumping to the veteran threshold, while Marchionne would also get rid of the system but instead staff his factories with younger, lower paid employees. The UAW and FCA are kicking off negotiations with a formal ceremony later today, a day after UAW President Dennis Williams was present for the handshake with General Motors chief executive officer Mary Barra. Ford is scheduled to hold the opening ceremony next week and the ongoing contracts with all three carmakers will expire on September 14.