General Motors and the United Auto Workers (UAW) union have agreed on the first phase of a comprehensive special attrition (aka job cut) programme that was part of the 2007 GM-UAW national contract.

Up to 5,200 workers will be eligible. Initially, offers will be made to all UAW-represented hourly employees working at GM's Service Parts and Operations (SPO) facilities across the country plus hourly employees at GM's Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, metal stamping plant, Massena, New York casting plant and to all hourly employees currently assigned to 'jobs banks' in Oklahoma City, Linden, New Jersey and Rancho Cucamonga, California.

Offers to UAW-represented hourly employees who work in GM's assembly, stamping, powertrain and engineering facilities will follow in early 2008.

Offers will include a combination of early retirement incentives and other considerations similar to the programme that GM, the UAW and Delphi implemented in 2006.

Affected employees will get the details starting next month.