Saturday, May 3, 2008

Ford to offer buyouts to 1,300 workers

Ford Motor Co. will offer buyouts to about 1,300 workers at assembly plants in Chicago and Louisville, Ky., as part of the automaker's plan to adjust capacity with demand for its vehicles, a spokeswoman said Friday.

The buyouts will affect about 800 workers at the Chicago plant and 500 at the Louisville factory, Ford (F, Fortune 500) spokeswoman Angie Kozleski said.

Workers at an engine plant in Cleveland also will be offered buyout packages, but the company did not say how many.

All three plants will move from two shifts to one this summer. The restarting of an idled second engine plant in Cleveland will be delayed until the fourth quarter, Kozleski said.

Dearborn, Mich.-based Ford is trying to cut labor costs during a turnaround. The automaker announced in March that it would be making adjustments based on capacity.

Terms and dates of the buyouts are not being announced at this time.

The offers are "very targeted buyouts to affected employees," Kozleski said. "It's part of our ongoing plan to adjust capacity with demand."

Not all workers at each of the three plants will be offered buyouts, Kozleski added.

The Chicago factory makes the Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable sedans and Taurus X crossover vehicle, while the Louisville assembly plant makes the Ford Explorer and Mercury Mountaineer sport utility vehicles. The Cleveland plant makes engines.

Only 4,200 hourly workers -- just over half number the company wanted -- had accepted the company's latest buyout and early retirement offers, Ford said last month.

Source: Cnn

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