Numerous Ford Motor employees have come forward and asked that the company stop making cop cars. According to Jalopnik and the Detroit Free Press, an estimated 100 Ford employees have raised the idea of ceasing police vehicle production, bringing it up in several internal town halls that the company has held. They also penned a letter to Ford executives amid protests against police brutality erupting across the country.
Chief communications officer at Ford Mark Truby said, however, the company is still open to hearing their employees' points of view, and take action where possible. "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," Truby told the Free Press. "It's a healthy dialogue."
"Throughout history, the vehicles that Ford employees design and build have been used as accessories to police brutality and oppression," Jalopnik reported the workers wrote in their letter to CEO Jim Hackett and chairman Bill Ford. "We know that while many join, support or supply law enforcement with good intentions, these racist policing practices that plague our society are historic and systemic—a history and system perpetuated by Ford for over 70 years—ever since Ford introduced the first-ever police package in 1950. As an undeniable part of that history and system, we are long overdue to 'think and act differently' on our role in racism."
According to the Verge, Hackett told employees in response to their letter that he doesn’t think it’s “controversial that the Ford Police Interceptor helps officers do their job,” and Ford will not stop doing business with law enforcement. Ford’s African Ancestry Network (FAAN) employee resource group, which has been pivotal in these internal conversations, has also circulated a letter asking the company to “cease development, production, and sale of all custom police vehicles and products.”
The employees are reportedly seeking a decision from the company by July 15. It is still unclear how many other employees have signed FAAN's letter.