Union warning as Ford reveals cuts


Union leaders have warned that hundreds of managerial and engineering jobs at car giant Ford are under threat as part of a voluntary redundancy programme.

Unite said the cuts could hit Ford sites in Essex, including its research and development centre at Dunton.

A Ford statement said: "As part of an ongoing review to achieve greater efficiencies in all areas of the Ford of Europe business in the current business environment, Ford is implementing three programmes - one in Germany, one in the UK, and a third for the rest of Europe - to reduce personnel-related costs.

"The reductions will be achieved through a combination of voluntary Ford salaried staff separations, and reductions in expenditure on agency workers and purchased services

"Ford of Europe expects the programs to result in the reduction of several hundred salaried positions, but exact figures won't be known for a few months.

"Any Ford salaried staff separations across all three programmes will be purely voluntary."

Unite's national officer for the automotive industry, Roger Maddison said: "Unite will be asking that its officers and reps have full involvement in this process which will be voluntary.

"We are also concerned that there is a coherent business case in going forward.

"We don't want the remaining managerial and engineering staff having excess workloads imposed on them, once their colleagues have left the company.

"Ford has said that it has excess capacity in these areas and we have to recognise the challenging economic conditions that Ford is facing."