While Ford has been facing a strike from its United Auto Workers (UAW) represented employees for several days now – not to mention another possible strike by Canadian union Unifor as well – talks between the two sides continue, though they seemingly remain far apart, even with outside intervention. However, while the union is only currently striking at the Michigan Assembly plant, which builds the Ford Bronco and Ford Ranger and is where FoMoCo laid off 600 workers as a result this week – it noted that if talks don’t make notable progress by Friday, the UAW will look at additional plant walk-outs. At the same time, the union has released yet another scathing video taking aim at what it calls “corporate greed,” though Ford has already issued its own reponse to that clip, too.
“Over the last eight weeks, the CEOs didn’t seem to be able to find the time to to show up for bargaining,” said UAW President Shawn Fain. “But in the last week, the CEOs and the executives have found a lot of time to be able to go on corporate news and talk the talk. They pretend the sky will fall if we get our fair share of the one-quarter of the profits the Big Three has made over the past decade. They want to say that our righteous fight for a higher quality of life for the working class would wreck the economy. We’re not going to wreck the economy. We’re going to wreck their economy, because it only works for the billionaire class.”
— David Shepardson (@davidshepardson) September 19, 2023
Ford responded with its own statement that “fact checks” Fain’s claims in the video, noting that “in the last 15 years, our North America adjusted EBIT was higher than 2022 three times, in 2013, 2015, and 2016 – 10, eight, and seven years ago. The UAW’s demands would wipe out billions of dollars of profitability that is essential to investing in our future, including creating and sustaining good-paying U.S. jobs, and beating non-union foreign automakers.” Additionally, it claims that “since 2019, Ford’s CEO salary is down 6 percent; total CEO compensation is up 21 percent, not 40 percent.”
While all three automakers are now offering the UAW a 20 percent pay increase, the union is reportedly seeking a recently-lowered ask of around 36 percent. Otherwise, the union is asking for the return of cost of living increases, the end of tiered pay systems, pensions for new hires, increased pensions for retirees, and a four-day, 32-hour full time work week.