UAW closer to approve a four-year labor deal with Ford

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 18, 2011

About 63% of the UAW’s members have voted to approve a tentative four-year labor deal with Ford Motor Co. According to the union, 15,862 members at Ford were in favor of the deal while 9,375 were not in favor. The UAW didn't indicate how many percent of Ford's 40,600 hourly employees were able to vote. Balloting will continue until Tuesday.

As of 8:30 p.m. ET Monday, the updated tally shows that the UAW Local 600, the largest Ford local union, had voted 62% to 38% in favor of the tentative deal. Local 600 in 2009 weren’t in favor of the concessions. The UAW members at a Claycomo, Mo., plant voted 88% in favor. Harley Shaiken, labor professor at University of California at Berkeley, said that the contract is “close to a done deal." He said that Local 600 is “pivotal” since it is the biggest Ford local and it is closely monitored by other Ford locals.

He added that this contract gets a major boost from the size and visibility of Local 600. For this year’s labor talks, Ford is the only U.S. automaker that could experience a strike. It’s because the UAW agreed to strike bans at General Motors Co. and Chrysler Group LLC as part of their U.S.-backed bankruptcies.

Fiat SpA owns a majority of Chrysler. According to Jimmy Settles, the head of the union's Ford department, said that he is “very optimistic" that the tentative contract will be ratified. Last week, the proposed Ford agreement was rejected by Ford's Chicago assembly plant, which produces the Taurus sedan and Explorer sport-utility vehicle.

It was also rejected by a factory in Wayne, Mich., which builds the Focus small car, as well as by a metal-stamping plant in Chicago and a parts plant in Saline, Mich. But on Oct. 14, the overall vote total changed to one of approval as workers at Ford's Mustang factory in Flat Rock, Mich., voted in favor of the proposed deal.

Other facilities that approved the contract include an assembly plant in Minnesota and a transmission factory in Livonia, Mich. Saline, Mich. But on Oct. 14, the overall vote total changed to one of approval as workers at Ford's Mustang factory in Flat Rock, Mich., voted in favor of the proposed deal. Other facilities that approved the contract include an assembly plant in Minnesota and a transmission factory in Livonia, Mich. [source: Autonews]

Topics: uaw, ford, united states

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