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51REPORT: French workers vote against blowing up plant as long as their demands are met

Workers at French car parts maker New Fabris (its main clients include Renault and Peugeot-Citroen) have voted down immediate plans to explosively send the roof of their plant into the troposphere, as long as talks with aides to Industry Minister Christian Estrosi are in the works. It seems that the workers, part of the CGT union, are demanding higher redundancy payouts as nearly 370 of them have lost their jobs following the collapse of the automotive sector.

11REPORT: Pipe and firebomb-wielding strikers injure 70 at Ssangyong plant; 4,000 flee

After slipping into receivership this past January, Ssangyong Motor Company's problems have only escalated. A court-ordered restructuring of the Korean automaker earlier this year left 976 employees without work. The displaced workers organized an armed sit-in on the Korean automaker on May 21 that has now turned violent.

27More cuts across the board: General Motors to slash dealers, plants and employees

General Motors' spate of announcements this morning was bad news for enthusiasts (e.g. the shuttering of Pontiac) and even worse for GM's debt-for-equity swap (without a 90% take-rate the automaker is bound for CH 11). But for dealerships and workers, GM's re-revised restructuring plan is going to hurt... hard.

AddToyota facing workers rights abuse charges

The Toyota Prius has long been the darling of Hollywood celebrities, though it seems its good reputation is being besmirched just a bit. We can't say whether the allegations are true or not, but The National Labor Committee (NLC) has published a report highlighting such offenses against Toyota as operating sweat shops, working with dictators and human trafficking. Also under fire are supposedly low wages for workers in Japan and long hours without overtime pay.

31Canadian union calls Chrysler's actions "stupid"

Buzz Hargrove isn't mincing words about his opinion of Chrysler LLC's strategy. Calling the decision to send the Magnum and Pacifica models out to pasture and cut shifts and jobs at the Brampton, Ontario plant "stupid," Hargrove has said the Canadian Auto Workers aren't interested in the type of concessions the UAW recently agreed to. While the UAW is allowing new hires to be given a lower pay level, as well as taking on a health care trust fund, the CAW will be having none of that, according to

20Stocking up: GM and Ford want to fund health care account with shares

The Big Three automakers' massive pension liabilities are well known. To remove that burden, a fund called a VEBA -- voluntary employee beneficiary association -- has been mooted. Automakers would put an agreed upon sum into the VEBA, after which they would be free from further pension obligations. The UAW would be responsible for administering the fund. Goodyear used that exact setup last year to end a strike with the United Steel Workers.

13Ferrari workers on strike, Italian style

Just because you spend your days in Maranello crafting F430s, 599s, and 612s, listen to them roar through the streets, and watch customers gleefully receive the keys to their new Italian toys doesn't mean life is perfect. Even though Ferrari was just voted as the best place to work in Europe, Ferrari workers have been on strike since March.

7Darn, we're outta that! Ford of Australia halts work due to supply problem

Ford's Broadmeadows facility has run out of at least one key component for V8 engines, and will have to shut down until its supplier resolves labor issues. The supplier, Coghlan and Russell Engineering, owes employees a boatload of money - in the order of 1.5 million-plus Austrailian dollars. Because of the outstanding payments, workers are holding out until they get the funds they're due, including pension and unemployment stipends. Ford and Delphi had offered to float Coghlan and Russell for a

43Ford wants workers to 'become walking advertisements'

In all of recorded employment history, it has never been a good thing when the boss "requests" that employees talk up the company, especially when non-employees know that those workers are operating under orders. Nevertheless, that is exactly the road Ford appears to have taken as part of the "Way Forward," asking each employee to become a "walking advertisement" for the blue oval.

17Nissan offering voluntary buyouts to all Tennessee plant workers

Word has just come across the wire that Nissan will be offering a "voluntary transition program" to all of its hourly employees working in either its Smyrna or Dechard manufacturing plants in Tennessee. These are effectively buyouts, which can net an hourly worker a lump sum of $45,000 and a bonus $500 for each year of service. It's certainly not the sweet deal offered to members of the UAW who work for General Motors and Ford, but the offer could help Nissan reduce the rank and file of its rela

51U.S. automakers still employ way more Americans than imports

While more and more import brands have opened up producton facilities in the U.S., a study performed by The Level Field Institute, a domestic industry promotion group (that's an important point, right there), found that domestic automakers (which includes General Motors, Ford and the Chrysler Group) support 2.5 more jobs for each vehicle they build in the U.S. than their import competitors. The study projects the number of jobs both groups will support in 2007, which include both blue- and white

1GM to face massive worker protests in Europe

The protests are said to potentially impact the launch of the Opel Corsa, a subcompact product that is key to GM's European model line-up. GM workers in Western Europe are said to be deeply concerned about the potential for their assembly jobs moving to lower-cost sites towards the east, and GM has also stated that it will be bringing over additional product from South Korea.  

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