Ford announced to the media on Tuesday, March 16, that it has decided Mexico will be the new location for a big project. The United Auto Workers (UAW) union has told workers at the Avon Lake Ford plant that a new project planned for 2023 will be moved from northeast Ohio to its Mexico plant.
This is a reverse of a commitment that the company promised to make when President Donald Trump was in office.
Ford has reneged on a pledge to invest $900 million in the Avon Lake plant in 2019. According to the UAW, Ford promised to invest $900 million in a new project at the Avon Lake plant two years ago, with production expected to begin in 2023. The agreement also called for the facility to be completely revitalized.
In the state of San Luis Potosí, Mexico Ford already has a Mexican plant that will produce small cars for export to the United States and other countries, but a specific model to be produced there is yet to be determined.
In Mexico currently, there are two final assembly plants and one engine plant that the company operates. It employs 8,800 people there, compared to 85,000 in the United States.
The company claims that compared to any other automaker in the United States, it employs more hourly staff, assembles more cars, and invests more.
In part the Ford statement read, “We remain committed to investing $6 billion in our U.S. plants and creating and retaining 8,500 jobs in America during this four-year UAW contract. We are invested in Ohio Assembly Plant and our dedicated workforce there. Since 2019, we have invested more than $185 million and created and retained more than 100 jobs at Ohio Assembly Plant, including actions planned for this year. This includes increasing our capacity to build additional Super Duty trucks at Ohio Assembly Plant to meet strong consumer demand.”
Much of this effort seems to be adequate responsibility that the automaker company feels it needs to fulfill.
In response to the transaction, Gerald Kariem, Vice President and Director at UAW National Ford Development wrote a letter to the members saying that they would take action since Ford has failed to honor its contractual obligations to this membership, according to WKYC3.
“The decision to turn its back on the community is just unacceptable,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) quoted WKYC3.