Detroit automakers are preparing to send bonuses to workers around the region. And this year even some temporary workers will get a share of growing profits.
Terri Houldieson is technically a temp. At Ford, she’s what’s known as a long-term supplemental employee. But she’ll still get a piece of the company’s $6.6 billion profit from last year. Ford says workers like Houldieson will receive, on average, about $2,000 each, depending on how much they worked in 2010. That’s compared to an average payment of $5,000 for regular employees – the most from Ford in a decade.
Houldieson is 25. She works as a left side seatbelt installer at Ford’s Chicago Assembly Plant. Chatting on her break, she said it was great to be recognized.
“We’ve all put work in and it just shows they respect us too. Kind of like a pat on the back.”
Ford employs a couple thousand long term temps. Many of them work at the assembly plant in Chicago and another in the Twin Cities, which Ford plans to close.
Terri Houldieson has only worked at the Chicago plant since October, so she doesn’t know how much she’ll get. But she hopes it’s enough to buy new clothes for her boys, and maybe some expensive shoes to protect her feet during those long hours on the floor.
GM has yet to release the terms of its expected profit sharing. Chrysler announced it would give its workers a “performance award” of about $750. The company isn’t calling this profit sharing because there aren’t actually any profits yet. A Chrysler spokesman said that while the company values the contributions of its supplemental staff, the bonus is restricted to regular employees.