The UAW jobs bank is a kind of employment limbo in which workers get paid a portion of their salary but don't work while they wait for their job to open up again. Last year, there were about 3,500 people in this so-called bank of jobs. It is the kind of benefit that can perplex an outsider, because someone can remain in the job bank for years and still get a wage from the company, plus supplemental pay from the company, plus unemployment benefits, plus insurance.
That was the kind of thing that Congress zeroed in on when it created stipulations for granting GM and Chrysler $17.4 billion in bridge loans. The intent was to get domestic automaker costs in line with those of foreign automakers by not paying people who aren't actually working. Due to that, Chrysler's job bank will officially end on Monday, with workers still in the bank being moved to another quizzical state: "enhanced layoff." Those folks will keep their insurance and should receive some kind of job benefits.

The union has told its members that "these provisions will only be in effect until such time as the mandates from the U.S. Treasury Department have been clarified," which would appear to leave the possibility open for a return of the job bank. Chrysler has only said is is working "with its UAW partners to comply with the terms and conditions outlined." GM is still wrangling with the UAW over its job bank. Ford, having sat out the government bailout, hasn't clarified its position on the matter.

[Source: Freep]


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