Jaguar Land Rover employees agree to a reduced workweek and a pay freeze in order to save jobs.

Workers at six U.K. sites voted overwhelmingly in favor of the proposal recommended by their unions, as well as GMB and Unite the Union, two of the largest general trade unions in the region.

Under conditions of the proposal, the workweek at the plants will be cut to four days and pay will be frozen for one year.

The unions in a statement say they supported the proposal in order to prevent mass layoffs due to the ongoing economic crisis.

“Our members in JLR deserve better – much better,” the statement says. “The management agreed with our view that, when this unprecedented recession ends, the retention of a skilled and loyal workforce is an integral part to the ongoing success of this business.”

Jaguar Land Rover, which was acquired by India’s Tata Motors Ltd. from Ford Motor Co. last year for $2.3 billion, already has laid off 450 workers this year as a result of the global recession.

Jaguar Land Rover CEO David Smith says the acceptance of the proposal is “an important step for us as a standalone business,” and “confirms our determination as a team to steer Jaguar Land Rover through these extraordinary and challenging times, so that our business is ready to take advantage when the downturn finally ends.”