Latest Solidarity Issue

Skilled trades rationalization

The merits of additional classifications to more effectively align the skills of our workforce was addressed in this tentative agreement. Upon contract ratification, skilled employees will be assigned to one of three work groups and into one of five classifications. No lines of demarcation will exist within the respective work groups. Skilled employees will only be assigned to job assignments they can safely perform.

The Tool and Die Technician work group will consist of the Tool and Die Maker classification for the following rationalized trades – Die Maker, Die Maker-Die Cast, Tool Maker and Tool Maker-Jig, and Fixture Builder.

The Electrical Technician work group will consist of the Electrical classification for the following rationalized trades – Electrician and Repairer-Welder Equipment. 

The Mechanical Technician work group will consist of the Machine Repair, Millwright, and Pipefitter classifications for the following rationalized trades – Millwright, Millwright/Welder, Sheet Metal Worker, Welder-Maintenance, Pipefitter, Pipefitter-Plumber, Pipefitter/Spray Gun Repairer, and Machine Repair.

For overtime opportunities within the Mechanical Technician work group where the overtime list for one classification is exhausted and additional employees are required, employees from the other two classifications who have demonstrated proficiency to perform the available work as identified on their radar charts will be offered the overtime work in line of low hours.

Employees in the rationalized classifications identified in each work group above will remain on their current seniority list for layoff, recall and seniority purposes until they obtain three years related experience in accordance with Section S-3(C) of the Supplemental Agreement –
Special Provisions Pertaining to Skilled Trades Employees of the national agreement.

The parties recognize that the related training began on Jan. 1, 2011, with skill assessments, online work and courses at the UAW Chrysler National Training Center (NTC), and that this training will be completed as expeditiously as possible based on individual training plans as outlined below, but no later than Sept. 14, 2014.

The five classifications will assume responsibilities of both the rationalized and eliminated classifications, and training will be developed and implemented accordingly. The assumption of responsibilities within the five classification structure, along with the elimination of all other classifications, is consistent with the cost reductions also identified in the Loan Security Agreement submission.

Skilled trades employees in the Rationalization Program will receive multi-dimensional training to include online training, technical training, and on-the-job training to develop their skill sets and capabilities to perform work in a safe manner. Training will be held at various in-state and out-of-state locations including the UAW Chrysler Technology Training Center (TTC). The work processes for on-the-job training have been agreed upon between the International UAW Skilled Trades Department and Chrysler Corporate Union Relations. On-the-job training will be provided by employees working together and actively assisting each other comparable to the Apprentice Program concept. Each employee will be responsible for recording their training plan with assistance from their supervisor and the Skilled Local Technician Training Center (LTTC), representative. Training will be prioritized based on employee requirements and operational needs and will be consistent with worldclass manufacturing.

Training plans will be filtered to address employee training needs as identified by their radar charts to eliminate their skill gaps and to align with current plant work assignments. Employees, upon initiation of their training plan, can simultaneously begin on the job training and can crossfunctionally apply their learning. Any concerns raised locally will be addressed between the union and company representatives. Further, during overtime periods, it is agreed and understood that employees will perform any work within their work groups that they can safely perform. With this expansion of job duties, management will ensure that the tools required to complete the work assignment(s) will be available to the employees.

The following classifications are not impacted by this agreement and remain separate and distinct:

  • #5703 Boiler Repair
  • #5706 Repair – Compressor
  • #5905 Boiler Operator
  • #5920 Compressor Operator
  • #5927 Engineer – Steam
  • #5929 Energy Center Operator
  • #5942 Sewage Disposal Plant Operator
  • #5654 Mechanic – Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (employees in this classification who are not associated with the Energy Center will be classified into “other mechanical" classification groupings)
  • #5693 Powerhouse and Maintenance
  • #5714 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5717 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5718 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5719 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5721 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5728 Mechanic – Gas and Electric Jitney
  • #5759 Mechanic – Truck-Tractor
  • #5762 Mechanic – Diesel

In addition, all other skilled trades classifications have been eliminated.

New entrants to the Electrical, Mechanical or Tool and Die work groups must have eight years of experience in a recognized trade or have graduated from a bona-fide apprentice program. Employees from the eliminated classifications who meet these qualifications will be reclassified as a Journeyman or J1-related trade in accordance with Section S-3(C).

All other ancillary skilled trades functions are beyond the new scope of work (i.e.- construction, high voltage projects) and will be sourced to a third party, with all provisions or past practices regarding contractor matching eliminated. As part of the existing contractor review process, similarly skilled work that is contracted out will not exceed the one-for-one match.

Aligning all manufacturing resources to properly implement the provisions of this letter is paramount to a successful transition. Within 60 days of ratification of the 2011 agreement, a meeting will be held by representatives of the International UAW and Chrysler Corporate Union Relations to communicate the commitments of this letter. In attendance for the company will be the plant manager, human resources manager, manufacturing engineering manager and maintenance area manager; union attendance will consist of the local president, plant shop chairperson, skilled trades committeeman and the skilled LTTC trainer.


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Skilled trades rationalization