Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Dear Tom

Fellow blogger, our household has two Fords, both pretty new, so we get lots of letters from Ford Australia. In August, a letter came personally addressed, explaining Ford’s plans for the future in light of the planned closure of the Geelong engine plant. I couldn’t resist the opportunity to respond. This is the ensuing correspondence. I hope it’s interesting –

Tom Gorman
Ford Motor Company of Australia Limited
Private Mail Bag 6
Campbellfield Vic 3061
Dear Tom
Thank you for your letter of 31 July 2007, setting out your company's plans for the future. I note your reference to our Australian heritage, a heritage that my family has been proud to support.
My father served in the RAAF in New Guinea in World War two, and I did a tour of duty in Vietnam in 1970 as an infantry soldier in 7 RAR.
Recently, the Federal government instituted a set of industrial laws that put our Australian ethos of a Fair Go in jeopardy.
Because protection for employees has been removed it now falls to corporations to accept responsibility to keep these employees safe. As a result, I have resolved to deal only with organizations that treat their employees with dignity and fairness. This means that when I have to make a decision about a relatively large purchase (motor vehicles) from any corporation, I take this into account.
Accordingly, I would appreciate it if you can provide answers to the following questions regarding your employment practices, before I make a decision to continue do business with the Ford Motor Company of Australia.
1. Have you taken advantage of the new industrial relations laws to do away with
employee award provisions?
2. Are any of your employees on AWA's?
I have purchased a number of Ford motor vehicles over the years, and will continue to do so long as Ford treats its employees well. My future purchases will depend on this.
Yours in justice and fairness

And Tom’s reply……….
Ford Motor Company of Australia Limited
1735 Sydney Road Campbellfield. Victoria 3061
I refer to your letter to Tom Gorman in which you raised questions regarding our employment practices.
In 2006 the company negotiated a new enterprise (collective) agreement with its 5 unions. This Agreement took almost 6 months to negotiate and was considered a success by both the company and the unions. We expect it will become a template for other agreements in the Automotive Industry.
Employees at Ford are either employed under the collective agreement or a common law contract.
Thank you for your enquiry and may you enjoy many more Ford miles/kilometres.

Yours sincerely

Peter Doyle
Vice President Human Resources
Ford Motor Company Australia
cc. Tom Gorman, President, Ford Motor Company Australia The Manager, Southern Cross Ford, Toowoomba Graham Barry, Regional Manager, Ford Northern Region
Copy to: The Manager, Southern Cross Ford, Toowoomba

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