Automakers order mask wearing in high-COVID Michigan counties

Ford Motor Co. and Jeep maker Stellantis NV are reimplementing a mask mandate starting Monday at their facilities in Michigan counties that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have labeled as “high” risk for COVID-19 infection.

Ford’s statement didn’t specify how long the mandate will last. Stellantis says it expects the requirement for the company-issued masks will be in place for two weeks. It affects employees, contractors and visitors at all facilities located in counties where the CDC now is recommending masks indoors. There are 16 in Michigan, including Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties.

“The health and safety of our workforce is our top priority as we continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation,” Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker said in a statement. “We are temporarily reinstating a face mask requirement at all Ford facilities located in areas that the CDC has classified as orange/ high-risk due increased COVID-19 cases which currently impacts Wayne, Washtenaw, and Macomb counties.”

Ford has assembly plants in Dearborn where its global headquarters resides, in Flat Rock and in Wayne. It also has engine and other components plants throughout Wayne, Washtenaw and Macomb counties.

Stellantis has its North American headquarters in Auburn Hills. It has assembly plants in Sterling Heights and Warren and two in Detroit, though Jefferson North Assembly Plant is down next week for retooling. It also has an engine complex in Trenton, a tool-and-die shop in Detroit and stamping plants in Warren and Sterling Heights.

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