Some Ford Staff Ask Company to Stop Producing Police Vehicles

Some Ford Motor employees reportedly asked the automaker to stop producing and selling police vehicles.
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Roughly 100 employees at Ford Motor (F) - Get Report reportedly asked the automaker to stop building and selling police vehicles due to the controversy surrounding cases of police brutality that have roiled the nation. 

Shares of the Dearborn, Mich., automaking icon at last check were down 3.9% to $5.85.

The issue has been raised with Ford executives by employees during at least one virtual town hall and a series of letters sent to executives since the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Some workers circulated a letter asking the company to “cease development, production, and sale of all custom police vehicles and products," according to The Verge.

Ford provides about two-thirds of police vehicles in the U.S., including the Police Interceptor, a highly modified Ford Explorer.

Last month, the heads of Ford, General Motors  (GM) - Get Report and Fiat Chrysler (FCAU) - Get Report each pledged to create more inclusive workplaces in the wake of Floyd's killing. 

Ford recently joined several other large companies in an advertising boycott against Facebook FB sites in an effort to urge the social media giant to regulate misinformation and hate speech.

"We want to hear and listen to all employees, understand their point of view and be transparent about the actions and positions we are taking," Mark Truby, chief communications officer at Ford, told the Free Press. "It's a healthy dialogue." 

Ford Chief Executive Jim Hackett said in a letter to employees obtained by the Free Press that "we’ve said clearly that Black Lives Matter and I am personally driving a review of our Diversity and Inclusion rituals, practices and behaviors."

"It’s not controversial that the Ford Police Interceptor helps officers do their job," the letter said. "The issues plaguing police credibility have nothing to do with the vehicles they’re driving."

In fact, the letter continued, "as we imagine the future power of our connected vehicles, smarter Ford vehicles can be used to not only improve officers’ ability to protect and serve, but also provide data that can make police safer and more accountable."

Ford did not immediately respond to a request for comment.