Workers at the Ford Motor Co. Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville, Kentucky have taken to the picket line in protest of a contract agreement reached by the United Auto Workers union. The vote results were revealed on Monday, with 54.5% of workers casting their ballots against the tentative deal.
This comes as a blow to both the UAW and Ford, as they had hoped for a smooth ratification process after reaching record agreements with all three major automakers following a six-week auto strike. However, it seems that not everyone is pleased with what’s on offer.
It’s not just Ford facing this issue – General Motors’ Flint Assembly plant also saw 52% of its workers voting no on their contract agreement last week. It seems like there might be some dissatisfaction brewing among autoworkers.
Now, you might think that these contractsSponsored Product are pretty generous – offering a 25% wage increase and improved retirement contributions by 2027. But hold your horses! These gains don’t even bring workers back to where they were before 2007 when wages and benefits were slashed amid tough economic times.
In fact, it won’t be until 2027 that the top wage at each of the Big Three will reach where it was 20 years ago when adjusted for inflation. And guess what? None of the carmakers conceded to the union’s demands to bring back pensions and retiree health care!
One worker at the Kentucky Truck Plant said: “There were a lot of gains but there were just a few things that I would have liked to have seen in this contract that didn’t make it,” including retiree health care.
Despite these setbacks, overall support for the contractsSponsored Product remains relatively high – about 10,000 ballots cast so far at GM and 25,000 at Ford indicate majority approval from union members across all Big Three automakers.
But here’s where things get interesting – if any one contract fails to reach majority approval from its respective workforce then negotiators would have to return back to square one! That means more negotiations…more meetings…more arguments over coffee…you get my drift?
So now we wait with bated breaths for final tallies from all three automakers expected later this week or next because let’s face it folks; nothing beats waiting around for news about labor disputes!
- Louisville Public Media reporter Jacob Munoz contributed reporting for this article (but who cares because he probably wasn’t funny).
And there you have it folks! A bunch of autoworkers shaking up things down in good ol’ Louisville! Who knows what will happen next? Maybe they’ll go out bowling together or form an impromptu band while they’re still out protesting…anything could happen really! Stay tuned because we’ve got our eyes peeled on those wildcats down south!