In a move to make reductions to its US workforce, Stellantis is reportedly offering voluntary severance packages to 33,500 employees. Details of the package aren't known, though it largely targets hourly workers. Approximately 2,500 salaried workers with more than 15 years on the job will also receive an offer, according to Reuters. Some Canadian employees could also receive buyout offers.
The buyouts were reportedly sent to employees in an email today from Stellantis Chief Operating Officer Mark Stewart, citing a need for the company to become more efficient by streamlining operations. At this time, there's no official word on how many jobs Stellantis may cut, though a United Autoworkers (UAW) unit allegedly stated 3,500 buyouts were targeted. Motor1.com contacted the automaker seeking additional information but a reply wasn't immediately returned. We will provide an update should new details emerge.
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This news comes nearly two months after the Jeep Cherokee plant in Belvidere, Illinois was idled, much to the dismay of UAW officials and state representatives. Similarly, Reuters reports UAW President Shawn Fain as calling today's buyout offer "a slap in the face" to employees, families, and Americans in general. Rising costs for EV research and production were cited by Stellantis as reasons for closing the Belvidere facility. Apparently, the motivation behind this recent buyout offer is the same.
The closing of the Cherokee plant resulted in approximately 1,350 layoffs, though Jeep pledged that the shutdown was not the end of the Cherokee. In an email to Motor1.com, a Jeep representative said there were "plans for that important vehicle in that important segment, which we will reveal in due time." Beyond that, the plant may not stay closed as there's a strong push from Illinois to reopen the facility, possibly as a location for production of the Ram 1500 Revolution electric truck.
As this news breaks, Stellantis shares word that the company earned the Best Employers: Excellence in Health and Well-being Award from the Business Group on Health.