The Sandusky area received some good news on the economic front when UAW Local 1216 approved a new contract with Automotive Components Holdings by an overwhelming 84 percent last week.
If the contract was ratified, Ford Motor Co. planned to source some lighting programs from the F250, F350 pickups and Explorer sport utility vehicle to the Margaretta Township plant. As a result, the contract with Ford would add up to 140 new jobs and save 115 jobs that would have been lost to outsourcing, according to a 2013 Visibility Agreement outlined in the contract.
The 1.2 million-square-foot facility on Ohio 101 in Margaretta Township employs about 1,000 workers, 250 of whom are temporary workers on an hourly wage.
While the wages of the temporary workers pale in comparison to what their UAW predecessors made while supplying auto parts to the Detroit Three automakers during the last 20 to 30 years, it should be noted these are still quality jobs -- jobs that could easily be moved to another plant or country.
Retaining our share of an ever-shrinking manufacturing job base in these tough economic times is vital to the region's economy.
We applaud UAW Local 1216 leadership and its members for working out this deal with ACH and Ford Motor Co. and doing whatever it takes to keep those jobs here.