A couple of weeks ago, the United Auto Workers (UAW) expanded its strike against Ford after walking out of the Kentucky Truck Plant, halting production of the Ford Super Duty, Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator. Additionally, the strike at the Kentucky Truck Plant is impacting a grand total of 13 other Blue Oval facilities, including the Louisville Assembly plant, which builds the Ford Escape and Lincoln Corsair. Salaried Ford workers at the Kentucky plant continue to operate the stamping side of the operation, which is keeping Ford Escape and Lincoln Corsair production humming along in Louisville, meaning that The Blue Oval isn’t planning on laying off any workers there, according to a previous report, However, now, UAW workers at the Louisville plant are being offered personal unpaid leave, according to the Detroit Free Press.
This offer – which is only available to final area assemblers – gives those workers a two-week period for unpaid leave, according to a labor relations bulletin sent to UAW represented employees. Those workers have until today to decide whether or not they want to take advantage of this deal, and they aren’t eligible for unemployment benefits, either.
There are some conditions for this unpaid leave, which will be granted in two-week increments, Monday through Sunday. The number of employees selected will be based on staffing needs of the department, and distributed between shifts. If an employee is selected for unpaid leave, that decision can’t be overturned at a later date, and those workers will also remain eligible for holiday pay and a ratification bonus if they get one.
Regardless, Ford spokeswoman Jessica Enoch said that this move isn’t being made in relation to the ongoing union strike. “We are offering voluntary schedule adjustments at Louisville Assembly Plant as part of our normal course of business, not related to the UAW strike,” she said.