Fiat Chrysler to lay off 3,200 temporarily in Toledo

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles expects to lay off 3,200 workers temporarily beginning in April as part of its plans to spend $700 million to retool a plant in Toledo for the next-generation Wrangler.

The workers will be laid off for up to six months, according to documents the company filed with the city and the state. The layoffs were first reported by the (Toledo) Blade.

Jodi Tinson, an FCA spokesperson, said the layoffs had been anticipated because of the time needed to end Cherokee production in Toledo in an adjacent plant and prepare for production of a new Wrangler there. The workers are expected to be called back, and the company has said it would add an additional 700 jobs.

The additional workers would likely be hired in a "phased-in approach, as opposed to hiring them all on day one," Tinson said.

The UAW workers will receive an average of 95% of their weekly take-home pay through unemployment insurance and benefits, through a combination of state benefits and union contracts with the company. The company informed local and state government officials of the layoffs in a letter last week.

The company is planning to move production of the Jeep Cherokee from the Toledo North Assembly Plant to a plant in Belvidere, Ill., and will need to retool Toledo North to produce the new Wrangler.

Tinson said the company has "not given a time frame on when the current-generation Wrangler is going to be ending production." The Wrangler is currently assembled at Toledo's south plant.

Fiat Chrysler also plans to spend $350 million to retool the Belvidere plant for Cherokee production.

The Free Press reported in July that the changes in Toledo would allow the company to boost production from a maximum of 240,000 vehicles per year to 350,000 vehicles per year.

Detroit Free Press


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