With the United Auto Workers (UAW) strike against Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis hitting the one month mark, both sides have certainly made progress toward a new contract, yet remain far apart on a couple of key issues. As a result, the UAW decided to expand its strike against The Blue Oval earlier this week by walking out of the Kentucky Truck plant – which builds the the Ford Super Duty, Ford Expedition, and Lincoln Navigator following a meeting in which the automaker reportedly informed the union that it had reached the limit of what it could offer – financially speaking – which has since been confirmed by a prominent executive.
“We have been very clear that we are at the limit,” Kumar Galhotra, head of Ford Blue, said during a conference call Thursday afternoon. “We stretched to get to this point. Going further will hurt our ability to invest in the business.”
This isn’t the first time Ford has made it clear that it has boundaries when it comes to how much it can offer the UAW in a new contract, as CEO Jim Farley previously said that the union’s original demands would quite literally “bankrupt” the company. It’s unclear what the union’s most recent asks are in regards to pay and other benefits, but as Ford Authority reported earlier this week, two main sticking points remain – increased retirement security and the inclusion of future joint-venture EV battery plants in the UAW’s master contracts with the automakers.
In the meantime, Ford just outlined the ripple effects of the strike at the Kentucky Truck plant, which is affecting a total of 13 additional facilities. The automaker has also laid off a total of 1,920 workers as a result of the ongoing strike thus far, with more seemingly possible to follow the longer this work stoppage continues, particularly if it spreads to include additional plants.