In a rare move, William Clay Ford Jr., executive chairman of the Ford Motor Company, has called on the United Auto Workers (UAW) to make an agreement and end the “acrimonious” talks between the company and its workers.
Ford released a statement urging both sides to reach an agreement soon. “Ford has long been committed to the UAW’s membership and their rights to collective bargaining. We ask the UAW leadership to approach negotiations with the same spirit of partnership and respect for the process that we are advocating,” he said.
The UAW has said they are seeking to protect their members from attacks on worker rights, job security, and wage increases far below the inflation rate. Ford has expressed its willingness to open its books and consider significant cost-saving measures, though it has not addressed worker rights concerns.
Both sides have been meeting since negotiations started in July, but recent talks have been very acrimonious, with the union issuing several scathing statements. This led Ford to issue its appeal to both sides to break the impasse. “We are confident that a mutually beneficial agreement can be achieved if we continue to work together and assess our positions with respect and understanding,” said Ford.
The UAW has yet to respond to Ford’s statement but will likely agree to Ford’s challenge and renew negotiations. The union is hoping to reach an agreement by the end of September.