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Ford reopening Chicago Assembly Plant, other factories in boon for ailing steel mills

Ford is going to bring back two shifts of workers to the Chicago Assembly Plant as it starts resuming production across North America on May 18.

The Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker plans to recall 12,000 auto workers who can't work remotely as it takes a phased approach to reopening, with enhanced safety protocols aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus. The restart of auto plants would be a major boon for the Region's steel mills, which have warned of thousands of layoffs along Northwest Indiana's lakeshore as orders dried up.

ArcelorMittal and U.S. Steel reported collectively losing $1.5 billion in the first quarter after automotive plants, some of its best customers, shuttered around the country. U.S. Steel warned it may be forced to temporarily lay off as many as 6,500 of its 16,000 workers in North America as a result of a steel decline in volume.

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