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Ford CEO: "We can't build vehicles in the U.S. without the UAW"

Former UAW spokesperson reacts to Shawn Fain calling for additional 7,000 workers to strike
Former UAW spokesperson reacts to Shawn Fain calling for additional 7,000 workers to strike 03:41

(CBS DETROIT) - The financial and emotional impact of the UAW strike is getting more tense by the day.

Ford Motor Company leadership says they have been putting forth an effort to see positive change from the beginning. 

Jim Farley, president and chief executive officer for Ford, says both sides need to realize they need each other to win. 

Farley says it's going to take compromise and leadership on both sides. 

"We can't build vehicles in the U.S. without the UAW," he said. 

Friday morning, Shawn Fain announced that 7,000 Ford and General Motors workers would join the strike. The additional employees left their posts starting at noon. 

According to Farley, the company has been on the negotiating table for the last two weeks.

The battery plant discussions are something that he says have been very difficult.

Farley says the company believes everything is taking too long and that the strikes were premeditated.

While he doesn't feel they are at the point of an impasse, that day could come should things drag on. Ford is suggesting that the UAW share specifics on the current offer on the table.

"We're trying to make an agreement where we can be competitive jointly the union would like to have that from a master agreement standpoint, and we have to be competitive across all the areas and in the U.S., and so that's why we were working with them on that right now, " said Bryce Currie, Vice President of Americas Manufacturing and Labor Affairs for Ford Blue. 

The impact on business is substantial. The Bronco plant and a Chicago assembly plant have both halted operations. If this continues week after week, the impact could be even worse.

Farley says the strike is tough on the company, but the big concern is for the employees and the supply base.

In response to Farley's claims, Fain issued the following statement Friday: 

"I don't know why Jim Farley is lying about the state of negotiations. It could be because he failed to show up for bargaining this week, as he has for most of the past ten weeks. If he were there, he'd know we gave Ford a comprehensive proposal on Monday and still haven't heard back. He would also know that we are far apart on core economic proposals like retirement security and post-retirement healthcare, as well as job security in this EV transition, which Farley himself says is going to cut 40 percent of our members' jobs. 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."  

For more on the UAW strike, visit here

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