Ford Rolling Over To Union On Tuition Assistance
May 13th, 2010 7:49 PM Share
With talk of a 2010 profit breaking out at Ford’s annual shareholder’s meeting, the UAW’s criticism of the Blue Oval’s decision to restore merit pay to white-collar workers is gaining some traction. UAW boss-in-waiting Bob King laid into Ford yesterday, arguing that the union’s sacrifices entitled it to a bigger piece of Ford’s success. As a result, Nasdaq reports that Ford is in talks to restore tuition assistance to its 41k hourly, UAW-represented workers. [UPDATE: Automotive News [sub] reports the deal is done]
College tuition reimbursement was one benefit Ford had restored to salaried employees back in March. Because apparently Ford does have other priorities besides buying down its ruinous debtload. Meanwhile, as we pointed out yesterday, union-represented workers are paid considerably less than white-collar workers at GM, and the differential in pay between the two employee classes is enormous compared to the transplant competition. But is the union holding GM’s feet to the fire, even though it is sitting on vast cash reserves (courtesy of the American and Canadian taxpayers)? Of course not. The UAW’s VEBA fund owns 17.5 percent of GM, whereas it has no such stake in Ford. Once again, by not taking a government bailout, Ford has been able to gain some momentum with consumers, but faces a far less cooperative union than its domestic competition. Which, as history proves, can be a major stumbling block to long-term success.
Published May 13th, 2010 5:56 PM