Ford Motors, Inc. and 7,000 employees represented by the Canadian Auto Workers met today in the first of a series of discussions meant to find ways to cut costs before the current labor contract expires in 2011. The discussion leaves 1,600 jobs at a plant in St. Thomas, Ontario somewhat up in the air, as the factory currently has no production plans after 2011. The union plans to fight to keep those jobs, but want at the very least an assurance that should this plant close, others in Canada will continue to operate and expand. Union president Ken Lewenza says that he hopes the plant could take on the production of some new car models, or produce alternatives goods in conjunction with other companies. Union members are also hoping to discuss a reconstruction of the employee health trust, but are not interested in discussing current wages or pension funds.