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Workers at a Ford plant OK contract concessions

Workers at a Ford Motor Company plant in suburban Sterling Heights overwhelmingly agreed to nonwage contract concessions in an effort to avoid layoffs or a permanent factory shutdown.

It was the fourth time this year that United Automobile Workers members approved changes in work rules that are expected to cut Ford's operating costs.

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The concessions, which were approved 3 to 1, are expected to save nearly 700 jobs. The cost-cutting project modifies scheduling, overtime, and work conditions, but doesn't touch wages.