Press Releases

Ford Motors employees testify about the sexual abuse and assault they experienced at workCHICAGO – Lawmakers on Monday threatened to drag in Ford Motors supervisors and management and demanded Gov. Bruce Rauner not purchase Ford vehicles for the state after hearing testimony from workers who suffered sexual harassment at local plants.

“The fact that assault, abuse, discrimination and retaliation are just part of the job for women at Chicago’s two Ford plants is astounding,” said Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake). “No one should ever have to experience the things these women did, let alone at work. Ford management and United Automobile Workers representatives have not only failed to protect these women and ensure they have a safe work environment, they have in many cases been the perpetrators of abuse and harassment.”

Over the past several decades, female employees at Ford Motors’ two Chicago plants have reported incidences of sexual harassment, assault, discrimination and retaliation, resulting in a string of lawsuits and an investigation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and commitments from Ford to crack down on the problem. Despite all of this, female employees are still experiencing harassment and discrimination at Ford, they told lawmakers.

“I intend to do everything in my power to hold Ford management and UAW representatives accountable,” Bush said. “I hope that the governor puts a halt on state purchasing of Ford vehicles until Ford takes real action and the victims receive justice.”

Members of the Senate Sexual Discrimination and Harassment Awareness and Prevention Task Force, co-chaired by Sen. Bush, heard testimony during Monday’s hearing on labor issues and sexual harassment. The task force was created in response to the recent wave of harassment allegations in Illinois and throughout the country. The group is conducting a comprehensive review of the legal and social consequences of sexual harassment and discrimination, and will make recommendations on how to combat them in Illinois.


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