ArvinMeritor severance plan wins union OK

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By Sharon Graves

ArvinMeritor and the United Auto Workers local 1813 have reached a settlement on what union employees will receive as the plant shuts down later this year.

The company released a statement Tuesday, June 2, confirming it has reached a closure agreement with the United Auto Workers Local 1813 in Carrollton.  “The agreement was supported by union leadership and recently ratified with a 93 percent vote by the Carrollton workforce,” according to the written statement.

In a vote Wednesday, May 27,  local union president David Hutton said the membership did ratify the severance package offered by ArvinMeritor, which he says was presented with the attitude “they could take this or take nothing.”

Union officials said that individuals who are still active employees at the plant will receive seven weeks severance pay and those employees who have already been laid-off with 20 to 27 years of service will receive three weeks severance pay, according to Hutton.  Those laid-off with less than 20 years of service will get nothing, Hutton added.

When asked specifically about the severance plan, ArvinMeritor’s spokesman said the company had issued its statement, which neither confirms or denies the particulars of the settlement.

“The company recognizes this action is difficult for the employees at the Carrollton facility and the entire community,” according to the statement. “Therefore, the company worked closely with the union to reach an agreement that benefited workers beyond the company’s contractual obligations.”