F » Topics » Supporting Statement

This excerpt taken from the F DEF 14A filed Apr 3, 2009.
Supporting Statement
 
The Institute of Medicine, established by Congress as part of the National Academy of Sciences, issued its principles for reforming health insurance coverage in Insuring America’s Health: Principles and Recommendations (2004). Secretary of Health and Human Services Michael Levitt, said in a September speech that, at its present growth rate, health care spending “could potentially drag our nation into a financial crisis that makes our major subprime mortgage crisis look like a warm summer rain.” (NYT, Dec. 3, 2008)
 
The Board of Directors recommends a Vote “against” Proposal 11.
 
The Company is keenly aware of the cost burden of providing quality health care to its employees and retirees. Likewise, we also are aware that employee health has a direct relation to productivity. Providing health insurance also enhances our ability to attract and retain employees. There is much in the proposal with which we agree. For example, we believe the issue of rising health care costs is a significant economic challenge for individuals as well as for companies. Accordingly, we have worked with insurers in order to offer quality health care at reasonable costs. We have worked with federal and local governments on various proposals to ease the cost burden of health care. In cooperation with the UAW, we maintain several fitness centers across the country and encourage all employees to utilize them in order to improve their overall health. We provide access to health awareness classes so employees can learn more about how to manage their health. These are just a few of the many actions that we are taking in order to improve employee health and lessen the cost of providing health care to employees.
 
While we acknowledge the importance of this issue, it is admittedly complex. While the principles set forth in the proposal are laudatory, we do not believe that adopting the principles noted above will necessarily move solutions to this issue forward. Moreover, by unilaterally adopting such principles, with which not every constituent may agree, we risk discouraging valuable dialogue between stakeholders that might not otherwise take place. As indicated above, we have been and will continue to address the issue of health care costs on multiple fronts and much of the debate on this important public policy issue will take place in public forums. The Board does not believe, however, that adopting the principles requested by the proposal is in the best interests of the Company.
 
The Board of Directors recommends a Vote “against” Proposal 11.


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Table of Contents

This excerpt taken from the F DEF 14A filed Apr 4, 2008.
Supporting Statement
The Institute of Medicine, established by Congress as part of the National Academy of Sciences, issued its principles for reforming health insurance coverage in Insuring America’s Health: Principles and Recommendations (2004). We believe principles for health care reform, such as the IOM’s, are essential. The recently agreed-to VEBA does not resolve all health cost issues for Ford. We ask shareholders to support this resolution.
 
The Board of Directors recommends a Vote “against” Proposal 9.
 
The Company is keenly aware of the cost burden of providing quality health care to its employees and retirees. Likewise, we also are aware that employee health has a direct relation to productivity. Providing health insurance also enhances our ability to attract and retain employees. There is much in the proposal with which we agree. For example, we believe the issue of rising health care costs is a significant economic challenge for individuals as well as for companies. Accordingly, we have worked with insurers in order to offer quality health care at reasonable costs. We have worked with federal and local governments on various proposals to ease the cost burden of health care. In cooperation with the UAW, we maintain several fitness centers across the country and encourage all employees to utilize them in order to improve their overall health. We provide access to health awareness classes so employees can learn more about how to manage their health. These are just a few of a number of actions that we are taking in order to lessen the cost of providing health care to employees.
 
While we acknowledge the importance of this issue, it is admittedly complex. While the principles set forth in the proposal are laudatory, we do not believe that adopting the principles noted above will necessarily move solutions to this issue forward. Moreover, by unilaterally adopting such principles, with which not every constituent may agree, we risk discouraging valuable dialogue between stakeholders that might not otherwise take place. As indicated above, we have been and will continue to address the issue of health care costs on multiple fronts and much of the debate on this important public policy issue will take place in public forums. The Board does not believe, however, that adopting the principles requested by the proposal is in the best interests of the Company.
 
The Board of Directors recommends a Vote “against” Proposal 9.
 
This excerpt taken from the F DEF 14A filed Apr 6, 2005.
Supporting Statement

Consumers are paying high prices at the gasoline pump because of record-breaking gasoline prices and poor miles per gallon vehicles.

Presumably to overcome Ford’s last place ranking in fuel economy and recover consumer trust, Ford has made commitments to “green” its vehicles. Yet, Ford continues to spend millions of dollars to lobby Congress and the Bush Administration contributing to the prevention of the true solutions consumers seek while potentially compromising consumer confidence and damaging Ford’s reputation.

Ford’s monetary contributions and actions are perpetuating Ford’s carbon burden. Ford’s vehicles release more carbon dioxide than the entire country of Mexico. In 2003, Ford spent $5,250,000 to lobby Congress and the Bush administration on a range of consumer and environmental issues, including fuel economy.

A recent World Resources Institute report noted that Ford is poorly positioned to respond to likely carbon restraints in both international and North American markets compared to its main competitors due to the company’s failure to aggressively pursue fuel economy technology. Ford is not prepared for the future carbon constraints. This future exposure may compound Ford’s current loss of market share. During the first nine months of 2004, Ford’s market share in the United States declined to 18.4 percent form 19.5 percent — a level not seen since the 1930’s.

Undermining federal efforts to protect consumers from global warming pollution may destroy consumer confidence in Ford’s vehicles and the competitive positioning of Ford’s vehicles within U.S. markets and exports to climate-conscious economies.

The report requested by this resolution will allow shareholders to determine if Ford’s current lobbying efforts are consistent with the company’s strategies, as well as whether such strategies are in the shareholders’ best interests.

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