French Goodyear Workers Take Bosses Hostage

Pair to be held until severance packages improve

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 7, 2014 2:30 AM CST

(Newser) – Furious French workers at a Goodyear tire factory have revived the practice of "boss-napping" and seized two managers amid a dispute over the plant's closure. The site's director of production and human resources chief are being held at the factory and union leaders say they won't be released until workers get a satisfactory response to their requests, which include more generous severance packages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The bosses were held overnight at the plant and refused offers of mattresses and blankets, the AP reports. "Things were sometimes animated, sometimes calm, but without any meanness," one captive plant manager told reporters, while the other said he would not give any statements under duress. Boss-napping was more common during the height of the financial crisis and while it is punishable by up to five years in prison, workers are rarely prosecuted for holding managers captive, the BBC notes.

Workers of the Goodyear tire factory gather at an entrance to the plant in Amiens, northern France yesterday.
Workers of the Goodyear tire factory gather at an entrance to the plant in Amiens, northern France yesterday.   (AP Photo/Michel Euler)
A worker at the Goodyear tire factory guards the human resources chief, Bernard Glesser, left, and the firm's production manager Michel Dheilly, right, who have been blocked from leaving the plant.
A worker at the Goodyear tire factory guards the human resources chief, Bernard Glesser, left, and the firm's production manager Michel Dheilly, right, who have been blocked from leaving the plant.   (AP Photo/Michel Euler)
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