By on November 19, 2015


My, that went downhill quickly.

United Auto Workers at a large Ford facility in Chicago voted 2-to-1 against a proposed contract with the automaker, according to the local union’s Facebook page (via Automotive News). According to the final tally, more than 2,000 workers at the Chicago plant voted against the contract, with only 99o to approve the deal.

According to Automotive News, ratification hinges on massive approval at Ford’s F-150 plant in Dearborn, Michigan, where 60 percent of workers there would need to ratify the deal for ultimate approval.

UAW officials held an impromptu press conference to assure workers that a better deal with the automaker wouldn’t be possible and turn back negative comments in “social media,” according to UAW Local 600 leader Bernie Ricke.

“If we thought there was another dollar on the table we would have got it in the first agreement,” Ricke said according to the Detroit Free Press.

The tentative deal with Ford included a $10,000 signing bonus and pay raises for workers on top of a $9 billion plant investment program. According to reports, Tier 2 workers at Ford facilities — which comprise about 29 percent of the overall workforce — said that raises wouldn’t bring those workers up fast enough, and that the automaker wasn’t offering enough to its workers.

Voting may wrap up as early as Friday. If an agreement isn’t reached between the union and the automaker it isn’t immediately clear what would next happen. When workers at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles rejected their first proposed contract, the union returned quickly with a new deal — but narrowly averted a strike in the process.

A proposed deal between General Motors and the UAW is awaiting approval or amendment for skilled trades workers. 

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24 Comments on “UAW Contract With Ford On The Ropes...”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    From the AN article:
    “Some people, especially younger people, think that you just go open Door No. 2 and see if there’s something behind Door No. 2,” UAW Vice President Jimmy Settles, the union’s lead negotiator with Ford, said Wednesday. “That’s not really how negotiations go.”

    Listen to your leaders, folks. Aluminum can be stamped in Mexico, too.


    “The tentative deal with Ford included a $10,000 signing bonus and pay raises for workers on top of a $9 billion plant investment program.”

    I might make more than these workers, but I’d jump on that deal in a heartbeat. My employer gives maybe 2% raises, massive increases in health care costs for the employees, and US plant closures.

    • 0 avatar

      “I might make more than these workers, but I’d jump on that deal in a heartbeat. My employer gives maybe 2% raises, massive increases in health care costs for the employees, and US plant closures.”

      Right? This year I finally received my first pay raise since 2008… by moving to a different position and taking on longer hours. In the years since my last honest pay raise my taxes increased, cost of living increased and health insurance rates increased and my pay remained flat so my take home shrank as time went on. WTF are these guys thinking…

    • 0 avatar

      I recommend you read Martin Ford’s “Rise of the Robots”.

    • 0 avatar

      That was indeed a nice offer, and wouldn’t bring up workers fast enough?! Considering how the rest of us are doing… My employer just announced that our healthcare is going up again! 18%! Plus my wife’s company let go 400 employees last summer. Hell I’m just glad we’re still both employed…

  • avatar

    Amazing that over 1,100 people chose not to vote; it could have pushed it either way.

  • avatar

    They just added a bunch of Tier 2 workers to DTP. Not looking good. Rouge has a weird make up of new hires, and guys that survived “The Way Forward” by moving to DTP from other Detroit area plants. There are a number of Wixom guys there as well as from other plats that had staff reductions.

  • avatar

    fire them all and move to mexico.

    • 0 avatar

      I doubt Ford wants to do this right now, but that’s a real option if they ever decide the UAW isn’t worth the trouble,

      The fact act Michigan labor laws have changed also raises the possibility that they could just blanket fire all of them and get new workers.

      I really doubt it gets there, but the union really shouldn’t feel like winning this fight is a sure thing.

      Edit: Union leadership seems to realize this too. Take the money and run guys.

  • avatar
    Firestorm 500

    That’s a very generous offer from Ford. UAW members need to look around at Detroit and see how lucky they really are. They are just way too greedy.

    I don’t like to see jobs leave the US, but if workers behave this way, I can see why management would want to.

    UAW doesn’t do anything special here that can’t be done somewhere else.

  • avatar

    Along with member’s demands, Ford should offer free training on folding burritos. That’s what UAW members will be doing next.

    But really Ford should give them what ever they want, and move all assembly to Mexico, but leave F-series and Mustang assembly in the US for now, and as long as they can stand it.

  • avatar

    I had three vehicles, one built at Chicago Assembly, one built at the Dearborn Truck Plant, and one built at Hermosillo Stamping and Assembly…and the fact that I know that should tell you something.

    Now I own a car that was built in Munich.

    At one time Ford going on strike would have made me unhappy, now not so much.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    @Denver Mike–That is what Ford will do make the higher profit vehicles in the US (pickups and suvs) and make their cars overseas. Not only Ford will do this but GM and Chrysler. The US manufacturers will not be that motivated to expand and build new plants in the US.

    • 0 avatar

      Your comment just got me thinking…what happens when the SUV/Crossover market collapses and most car production has been shipped out of the US? Does this put the domestic manufacturers in play to wipe the slate clean with the UAW. The negotiated deal sounds sweet and I’m surprised they didn’t accept.

      • 0 avatar

        It just seems they know their days are numbered and will soon be fighting for jobs at the El Taco and McDonalds, against teens and new immigrants.

        So they might as well go for broke. Get all they can, while they can. Yeah it’s a good deal they’re passing up. At least from what I can see.

        • 0 avatar

          At least when I went through industrial doom it was long enough ago that other options were open to a determined young guy who could keep his d1ck in his pants and bad chemicals out of his bloodstream.

          That poor kid in the photo.. no chance no matter how dedicated and disciplined he may be. Like horses, people haven’t been a valuable asset for quite a long time.

  • avatar

    From a Union man’s perspective here these guys are wrong. the only thing they got to bitch about is the Car product going to mexico. is that worth going out over? what if Truck sales stay strong? they will all still be working balls out. If the bottom falls out of the truck market, Ford isn’t going to make a profit selling their cars anyways……Still going to be in trouble. Take your payoff for your years of sacrifice and the resurgence of the industry and be happy. Public whining about a damn good contract is why people hate Us Union Workers. They only hear the whining not the real issues. and here, there are no real issues just the low margin cars going foreign…..

    • 0 avatar

      It does seem Ford especially would be doomed without fullsize pickups and big SUV sales, except they may sell lots more midsize vehicles in the process.

      Keeping in mind, the mind blowing profitability of pickups and BOF SUVs comes from tremendous volume only. They’re terribly expensive to build otherwise, compared to a simple ‘body shell’, with a shared platform and drivetrain with various other cars, CUVs, etc. Not to mention if it’s hecho en Mexico.

  • avatar

    So far, the first FCA contract got soundly rejected, the GM contract is in question due to rejection by skilled trades, and now the Ford contract looks like it will probably be rejected.

    Somehow, somewhere, the UAW executive got waaaaaaay out of touch with the mood of the membership. It would be interesting to understand how this happened it’s supposed to be a major focus of the executive’s time and effort.

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