Monday, January 7, 2008

Chrysler details nearly 5,000 hourly layoffs

Ryan Beene | Automotive News DETROIT -- Almost 5,000 hourly and temporary workers will be laid off at Chrysler assembly plants in North America by the end of March.

The job cuts have been expected since CEO Bob Nardelli said Nov. 1 that Chrysler would eliminate up to 10,000 jobs and four vehicle models from its lineup.

Chrysler spokeswoman Michele Tinson today confirmed:

-- The Toledo North Assembly plant will lose its third shift in early February. About 780 hourly workers will be laid off. The plant builds the Dodge Nitro and Jeep Liberty SUVs.

-- Jefferson North Assembly in Detroit will drop its second shift in early February, and about 900 hourly workers will be laid off. Jefferson North makes the Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Jeep Commander SUVs.

-- Brampton Assembly, near Toronto, will lose its third shift by early March. About 1,000 hourly workers will be laid off, the Detroit Free Press reported. The plant makes the Chrysler 300, Dodge Magnum and Dodge Charger sedans.

-- Belvidere Assembly in Illinois will lose its third shift by the end of February, with layoffs planned for 1,096 workers. About 600 of those are temporary workers. The plant makes the Dodge Caliber small car, Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot crossovers.

-- Sterling Heights Assembly near Detroit will lose its second shift, and about 1,140 workers, by the end of March. The plant builds the Chrysler Sebring and Dodge Avenger sedans.

Attrition packages are being negotiated by representatives from Chrysler and the UAW, Tinson said, but declined to give any details about the packages.

“We’re hopeful to be socially responsible to offer retirement packages and early buyouts,” she told Automotive News. “We are working closely with the UAW to determine appropriate rollout and packages.”

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