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Ford and the United Auto Workers plan opening ceremonies today for a training and activity center near the company's Buffalo Stamping Plant in Hamburg.

The Family Service and Learning Center is at 3796 Lakeshore Rd., adjacent to the UAW Local 897 hall.

The center will provide a place for training and activities for 5,000 Ford and Visteon workers, families and retirees. Visteon, a parts supplier to Ford and other auto makers, has a plant in West Seneca.

The opening is part of an initiative by Ford and the UAW, launched in 1999, to improve services for workers. Similar centers have opened in Michigan and other areas with Ford plants, spokeswoman Marcey Evans said.

"It becomes like a community center" with classes in health and activities, space for parties and recreational programs, she said.

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