Monday, July 03, 2006

Judge approves expanded buyout program for Delphi workers

Friday, June 30, 2006
Judge approves expanded buyout program for Delphi workers
Second plan affects about 17,000 workers from IUE-CWA and UAW unions at supplier.
Vinnee Tong / Associated Press

NEW YORK -- A bankruptcy judge on Thursday approved attrition programs that will be offered to more than 17,000 Delphi Corp. employees represented by its two largest unions, allowing the auto parts supplier to move forward on a second wave of buyout and early retirement offers.

Judge Robert Drain confirmed a motion by Delphi to offer attrition packages to about 8,500 hourly employees represented by its second-largest union, the International Union of Electronic Workers-Communications Workers of America, and 8,600 members of the United Auto Workers who were not covered in an earlier, similar program.

The company has said the "soft landing" offers, which will allow it to shrink its work force, are a crucial part of its overall plan to emerge from bankruptcy protection.

The program will cost Delphi an estimated $135 million.

In contrast to earlier court hearings, during which the unions had been at odds with Delphi, union representatives spoke in support of Delphi on Thursday. IUE-CWA attorney Tom Kennedy called the plans "incredibly important."

The union said the plan was the result of "a consensual resolution of difficult and complex matters affecting thousands of hourly employees and their families."

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