Freightliner cuts workers' pay

| 10/3/2001

Freightliner has announced a companywide rollback on pay and benefits affecting thousands of nonunion workers as the company continues to suffer from yearlong depression in truck orders and a guarantee to buy back used trucks on a limited basis. The news comes as the company prepares to announce restructuring plans later this month.

According to The Oregonian, the company is cutting costs with a 5-percent reduction in salaries and wages, increasing prescription drug co-pays and the elimination of 2001 year-end bonuses' for 13,100 nonunion employees.

Freightliner has also asked 1,200 union employees at its Portland headquarters to consider similar wage and benefit concessions to keep its truck- and parts-manufacturing plants on Swan Island from closing. Workers are expected to vote this week on the proposal. Their current labor contract calls for slight wage increases each year, as well as bonuses.

Union members have been told that the company expects to lose $1.2 billion this year and that its parent, DaimlerChrysler, is considering closing Portland's plants, the newspaper reported. The company also operates plants in North Carolina, Canada and Mexico and employs a total of 15,800.