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Ford, UAW avert Kentucky Truck Plant strike with tentative deal

Jacob Munoz | LPM
UAW workers and supporters attend a Louisville rally held outside Local 862's headquarters on Sept. 21, 2023.

Ford Motor Company and the United Auto Workers said Wednesday they had reached a tentative local agreement at the Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville. The deal comes days before union-represented workers could’ve gone on strike at the plant.

Last Friday, the United Auto Workers union threatened to strike at the Kentucky Truck Plant — Ford’s most profitable plant globally — over key issues around health and safety and skilled trade jobs.

The move would’ve caused nearly 9,000 hourly employees at the Louisville site to walk off the job on Friday. They make F-series pickup trucks as well as large SUVs.

On Wednesday, Ford and UAW representatives said they’d settled negotiations.

“We are pleased to have reached a tentative agreement on a new labor contract,” said a Ford spokesperson in an email.

The UAW said in a press release that the deal responded to “core issues of concern to KTP autoworkers.”

Union-represented workers at the plant will have to vote to approve the deal before it can take effect. They’re part of UAW Local 862, which represents around 12,000 total Ford workers at KTP and the Louisville Assembly Plant.

Todd Dunn, the union chapter’s president, said Wednesday that local contracts establish workplace rules, such as how jobs can be bid on, the size of teams and break policies.

He added that the UAW and Ford reached a local contract agreement at LAP in January.

The union’s strike threat came months after KTP workers walked off the job for two weeks during stalled national contract negotiations. Non-union salaried employees kept the plant operating, which prevented LAP from shutting down.

A new four-year national contract for Ford union workers was approved in November. While a majority of employees nationwide who cast votes agreed to the deal, KTP members voted against it.

This story will be updated.