The tentative contract agreement between the UAW and Fiat Chrysler stirred quite a reaction out of those who follow the auto industry, despite the disclosure of virtually none of its details.
UAW President Dennis Williams said the contract, announced Tuesday at a joint press conference with Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne, will close the gap between Tier 1 and entry-level workers.
Meanwhile, Marchionne said he agreed with the union’s idea of implementing a health care co-op as a way to curb rising costs.
Little else so far is known about the tentative deal, which still needs to be approved by FCA’s 37,000 hourly workers next week. That hasn’t stopped anyone from reacting, though. Check out what Williams, Marchionne, union leaders, industry experts and others had to say:
- Williams: “If you don’t share wealth, you can’t have a strong society. These guys get it, on both sides … Ultimately, our membership will make the final decision. We will continue … to make the best damn vehicles in the world.”
- UAW Vice President Norwood Jewell, head of the Chrysler department: “Now it’s our job to go out and explain it to the people so they understand what a great job we did. … We were able to have open dialogue and really go after some issues that were tough.”
- Marchionne: The deal is “a reflection of the alignment of the interests” between FCA and the union.
- Marchionne on a health care co-op pool: “I think it’s embedded in the spirit of the agreement and I sincerely hope that it gets implemented.”
- Ken Lortz, UAW Region 2-B director, to WTOL: “I’m glad that we reached an agreement. Our members have stood very, very strong and the last several days have been some long days of bargaining. I made sure that all of my local union leadership are aware that we have a tentative agreement and that details will be forthcoming.”
- Unifor Canada (formerly the Canadian Auto Workers), via Twitter: “Congratulations to our sisters + brothers at the @UAW on the new deal with Fiat-Chrysler. #labor #unions #goodjobs”
- Harley Shaiken, labor expert at University of California, Berkeley, to Reuters: “The stakes go well beyond Detroit and the automotive industry.”
- Justin Fox, Bloomberg View columnist, before the deal: “It used to be that the UAW’s primary goal was to get as much out of the Detroit Three as possible. That’s still a goal, but it’s a secondary one. The primary goal now seems to be making sure all three stay alive.”
- Kristin Dziczek, labor analyst for the Center for Automotive Research, to Reuters: “Expectations are very high for raises for everyone.”
- Brandon Jessup, CEO of the Michigan Forward Urban Affairs Group, on Twitter: “down with the two-tier pay system! Another win for labor! #unionstrong #FCA #UAW #uniteblue”
- John Beck, labor expert and associate professor at Michigan State University, to The Detroit News: “The UAW has attempted as much as it can to solidify good jobs for American workers. It’s hard to know if it will be ratified in the current environment when a good job is hard to find.”
- Andy Leavitt, chief of staff for Michigan Senate Democratic Leader Jim Ananich, on Twitter: “Lots of discussion about #UAW #fca TA. Worth noting- @UAW VP Jewell is an incredibly honest and skilled negotiator. Deserves huge props”