Chrysler Canada warns workers of demise

April 17, 2009 at 4:26 PM

TORONTO, April 17 (UPI) -- Chrysler Canada's top two executives told 8,000 employees Friday if they didn't accept benefit reductions, the company would fold.

"Without labor concessions Chrysler Canada's manufacturing operations will not survive long-term," the letter from Chairman Robert Nardelli and President Tom LaSorda said.

Talks with the Canadian Auto Workers union are scheduled Monday. The CAW this week resisted calls from the federal government and the potential partner, Italian automaker Fiat, to reduce all-in wages and benefits by $19 an hour to the $57 mark, the Globe and Mail reported.

"We are coming down to the wire in the fight for our company's survival -- and we need your support," the letter said.

The Canadian divisions of Chrysler and General Motors have been offered bail-out packages by the federal government and the provincial government of Ontario, which is home to the auto industry in the country. However, each offer is contingent on the companies showing they can lower costs and demonstrate sustainability.

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