Employees at Italian car giant Fiat are voting on a new working deal that could have wider implications for Italy’s labour market.
Management hope the referendum at the plant near Naples will result in more shift flexibility and limit the number of strikes and sick days.
But, not everyone agrees.
‘‘We say no to this agreement, because it wipes out workers fundamental rights: the right to strike and the right to take sick leave. All things that have nothing to do with the investments and with the production of our Panda model,’‘ said one worker.
Despite a history of walkouts and the worst productivity of all of Fiat’s Italian plants, the company insists the inflexible labour rules are a drain on productivity.
One worker backing the agreement said:’‘We will vote, at least I will vote yes, because we believe we have the right to work. We cannot go on this way. Now we have a great chance today and we do not want to miss it.’‘
The firm has promised a big boost in investment at the site if the deal is passed. So far, four out of five of the plant’s unions have agreed.