Major trade union body CGIL-FIOM has spoken out against FIAT’s “scandolous” behaviour as the company announces losses and two week lay-off in February while continuing to dish out generous dividends to its shareholders. General Secretary Giorgio Cremaschi said that FIAT is “behaving like an American multi-national which happens to have factories in Italy”. Around 30,000 workers will be affected by the temporary lay off.
The manufacturer has already stopped production at its plant in Termini Imerese in Sicily where workers have been protesting against closure. Trade unions stated that the move in the Sicilian plant was made without any warning by the company. (news source and picture: contro la crisi.org)
Lay-offs are usually covered by the cassa integrazione social security benefit system where employees receive a percentage of their salary for a certain period even though they are not working. Applications for this benefit rose by a staggering 311,4% in 2009 compared to the previous year. Those working in companies with less than 15 employees are not entitled to the benefit.