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UAW Members Approve Concessions at Key Ford Plant

March 2, 2009
Related Topics: Financial Impact, Compensation Design and Communication, Labor Relations, Latest News
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United Auto Workers members at a key Ford Motor Co. assembly plant have approved a new concessionary agreement by a wide margin, according to a posting Monday, March 2, on the Web site of UAW Local 900 in Wayne, Michigan.

The agreement was ratified at the suburban Detroit plant by 83 percent of voting production workers and 53 percent of skilled trades workers, the posting said. The local, representing about 3,500 workers, voted Sunday, March 1.

Top officials of Local 900 could not be reached for comment.

Ford’s axle plant in Sterling Heights, Michigan, was the first local to approve the contract Saturday. The margin of approval was 59 percent among the 2,200 workers at the suburban Detroit plant, represented by UAW Local 228.

About 42,000 UAW-represented workers at Ford’s U.S. operations have until March 9 to vote on the contract.

The new agreement calls on workers to give up lump-sum bonuses and cost-of-living raises over the next two years. It also limits overtime pay and supplemental unemployment benefits.

Ford also can use company equity instead of cash to fund half of the $13 billion the automaker owes for a UAW retiree health care trust. Skilled trades classifications will be cut from more than a dozen at some plants to only two: mechanical and electrical.

Filed by David Barkholz of Automotive News, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail editors@workforce.com.

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