Ford CEO Sick Of UAW President Coverage: 'Been On The TV More Than Jake At State Farm'

Zinger Key Points
  • The big three Detroit automakers continue to realize the impact of UAW strikes at multiple locations.
  • Ford CEO Jim Farley spoke out against the strike and called for the UAW to work together with auto companies.

The UAW strike enters day 18 with no end in sight, as more automotive factory workers join the picket lines. Ford Motor Company F CEO Jim Farley is among the executives pushing back against the UAW demands.

In a recent interview, Farley used a unique comparison to illustrate how much attention the president of the UAW is getting.

What Happened: Contract negotiations between the United Auto Workers (UAW) and Big Three Detroit automakers, which includes Ford, General Motors Company GM and Stellantis STLA, reached a point of no return 18 days ago.

The UAW is fighting for a pay raise, shorter work week, better retirement benefits and other items in the contract renewal negotiations. With a contract not reached 18 days ago, UAW workers are striking at several automotive facilities.

Farley discussed his frustration with the ongoing dispute and shared news that the company’s Chicago Assembly factory was among the latest locations targeted by the UAW for strikes, as reported by the Detroit Free Press.

“What’s really frustrating is that I believe we would’ve reached a compromise on pay and benefits, but so far the UAW is holding the deal hostage over battery plants,” Farley said in a recent Facebook Live video.

Farley said the UAW is spreading misinformation about the potential loss of jobs due to Ford’s transition to electric vehicles.

“In fact, for the foreseeable future, we will have to hire more workers as some workers retire, in order to keep up with the demand of our incredible new vehicles.”

The Ford CEO called for unity and for the UAW to work together on a compromise instead of creating “industrial chaos.”

“If we’re going to take on the world, we have to do it together.”

Farley lashed out at UAW president Shawn Fain in the Facebook Live interview.

“Shawn has been on the TV more than Jake at State Farm at this point. I’ve heard what he wants but I’ve never heard him say once he believes the UAW can be the competitive advantage to Ford.”

Jake from State Farm is a reference to a popular character that often appears in State Farm Insurance commercials, which have been widely broadcast in recent years and are well-known to many consumers.

Fain fought back against the comments from Farley and accused the CEO of lying about the current state of the negotiations.

“It could be because he failed to show up for bargaining this week, as he has for most of the past 10 weeks,” Fain said.

Fain noted that the transition to electric vehicles by Ford could cut 40% of UAW jobs at the company. The UAW president also managed to get in a State Farm reference of his own in his rebuttal.

“Like a good neighbor, we’re available 24/7. Name the time and the place you want to settle a fair contract for our members, and we’ll be there.”

Related Link: 5 Things You Might Not Know About Ford CEO Jim Farley 

What’s Next: The UAW strikes began on Sept. 15 and have now expanded to more than 40 automotive plants across the three car manufacturers.

“As this strike shows, we can’t build vehicles in the U.S. without the UAW. Whether Shawn Fain believes it or not, the UAW needs a healthy Ford, General Motors and Stellantis to have a future,” Farley said. "It’s going to take compromise. It’s going to take leadership to meet this moment."

A report from Anderson Economic Group released Monday said the U.S. economy has lost $3.95 billion as a result of the UAW strike, as shared by Fox Business.

The total includes losses for automakers, workers, customers and suppliers.

Read Next: Ford Q2 Earnings Highlights: Revenue Beat, EPS Beat, EV Revenue Up 39% Year-Over-Year, Production Update And More 

Photo: Ford and Shutterstock

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Posted In: NewsTrading Ideasauto stockselectric vehiclesJim FarleyShawn FainUAWUAW StrikeunionsUnited Auto Workers
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