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Are Ford and the UAW Heading for Confrontation?

Union tallying strike vote as contract deadline nears.

by on Aug.25, 2011

Ford workers assembling the 2012 Focus.

The United Auto Workers Union is tallying up strike votes at Ford Motor Co. plants around the country as contract negotiations between the union and domestic automakers move towards the mid-September deadline.

The UAW is in the midst of talks with all three of the Detroit automakers, but Ford is the only one the union is legally able to strike due to strictures placed by the federal government in the multi-billion-dollar bailouts of General Motors and Chrysler following their 2009 bankruptcies.

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There are clearly some tough issues on the table — especially the unpopular two-tier wage structure that has been rapidly expanded since the industry’s near-collapse.  Nonetheless, both sides are trying to downplay the possibility of a confrontation.