Ford Resumes Van Production In Avon Lake

Aug 13, 2015

The Ford plant in Avon Lake

Ford ended production of a series of vans last year, costing 200 workers at its Avon Lake plant their jobs.

Now the plant is making the vans again. Joanna Richards of member station WCPN in Cleveland reports.

In a reversal of fortunes, Ford brought the work to Ohio from Mexico as part of 2011 contract negotiations with the UAW.  
Start fading up sounds of plant and crowd (under following graf)…  
Hundreds of union workers cheered along with politicians and company officials as Ford’s President for the Americas, Joe Hinrichs, drove the plant’s first U.S.-made F-650 off the assembly line.  
(0:05): Honks followed by loud cheers…  
Fades down under next voice track…  
When Ford announced it would move production to Ohio, Hinrichs said it would give the company complete control over design, engineering and manufacturing.  
Analysts also said bigger vehicles like the trucks bring in higher profits, making higher labor costs in the U.S. more palatable.   
U.S. Representative Mary Kaptur said manufacturing can come back if companies, workers, and government work together.  
Kaptur (0:17): I may be one of the few members of Congress who comes from a United Auto Workers family…I have seen such change and transformation. And today’s celebration with this launch tells us America can do this.  
Although Ford has brought these jobs to the U.S., the company has recently invested in other manufacturing operations in Mexico.