Profit link holds up Chrysler pact

Voting on the tentative contract between the United Automobile Workers and the Chrysler Corporation announced Sept. 16 has been delayed as UAW leaders try to make the pact more palatable to the rank and file.

In a progressive step, UAW negotiators and Chrysler met in Detroit Monday to clear up ''troublesome language'' on penalties for workers who chronically miss work, Monitor correspondent Ed Townsend reports. They were successful.

But the contract's ratification remains doubtful despite the absenteeism agreement. The current sticking point is that workers oppose the linking of wage gains to Chrysler profits, although they were assured Chrysler will have a profitable year.

UAW leaders are now trying to persuade unionists in 54 locals representing about 80,000 workers (more than 45 percent on layoff) that the settlement should be given a one-year test.

Workers' hourly pay would not increase, but if Chrysler shows a $20 million quarterly profit they would divide $4 million in profit sharing. If profits are also restore the cost-of-living adjustment plan surrendered by UAW during the Chrysler crisis.

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