“The less they work, the happier they are,” observed Vittorio di Giola, owner of the Caffetteria Vicky, a favorite haunt of Fiat workers on the Viale Alfa Romeo, Pomigliano’s main drag.
That view was acknowledged by some workers, union officials and even the town’s mayor, Raffaele Russo. “There are those who don’t miss a chance to miss work,” Mr. Russo said.
Just last month, Fiat erected large television screens inside the factory when Italy played in the World Cup to encourage employees to come to work, said Mr. Nacco, the longtime worker there. Still, some people did not show up. “And Fiat was paying us to watch the game,” he said.