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Chrysler North employees "disappointed" with bankruptcy

(UPI photo/Bill Greenblatt)

By Rachel Lippmann, KWMU

Fenton, MO – Employees at the Chrysler truck plant in Fenton are disappointed with the company's bankruptcy filing.

The smallest of the American auto manufacturers filed for Chapter 11 protection Thursday after it could not reach a deal with creditors.

"From my first day walking in and to this point now, I've seen a lot of things on the management aspect as far as the production of vehicles that just didn't seem right, and I think a lot of it came to a hear now," said Clement Smith, the recording secretary for United Auto Workers Local 136 and a 12-year employee.

Clement said he knows nothing about the future of the North plant, which is one of three in the country that makes the Dodge Ram pickup truck and has been operating just one shift since September. All of Chrysler's plants are expected to be idled for at least a month as the company completes a deal with Fiat.

Union contracts allow workers to get their benefits and about 75 percent of their salary during the shutdown, Smith said. No one likes to be off work, he said, "but given the economic situation of the country right now, people are fortunate to have a job and to still be able to have benefits, so they'll be tough and fight through it."


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