October 29, 2007 8:00 AM, EDT

UAW Approves Chrysler Contract

The United Auto Workers narrowly approved a proposed contract with Chrysler LLC, Bloomberg reported.

The vote was approved by 56% of production workers and 51% of skilled trades employees, according to a UAW statement. Also, 91% of office and clerical workers and 79% of union-represented engineering employees ratified the pact, Bloomberg said.

The union’s shift now goes to getting an agreement with Ford Motor Co., the last U.S. automaker without a new labor agreement, Bloomberg reported.

The Chrysler accord, like an earlier agreement UAW reached with General Motors Corp., calls for creation of a union fund to take responsibility for retiree health care. The agreements also call for lower wages for new employees, Bloomberg said.

In return, the union received some guarantees of future work at UAW-presented plants.

For decades, the union insisted employers bear full responsibility for health care and has resisted multiple tiers of wages, Bloomberg said.