Well that didn't last long. It appears that the struggle by the United Auto Workers to unionize the Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga, TN, is far from over, despite dropping its appeal of the failed vote to the National Labor Relations Board. This time it may even have renewed support coming from VW's Global Group Works Council.

Frank Patta, Global Group Works Council general secretary, spoke through an interpreter at the UAW Constitutional Convention and said that his representatives would support the union, according to Automotive News. He believes that the political turmoil around the time of the vote cost the group the election. The final results were 712 against and 626 in favor of representation.

Unionizing the plant now could be difficult. When it dropped the appeal, the UAW agreed not to call for another election for at least a year. There are alternatives, though. The workers could go through the complicated legal process of forming the works council on their own. If it waits a year, the union could try organizing only specific portions of the plant, like the body shop for example. Or it could cut out the NLRB, in favor of a neutral third party.

The works council has been one of the major goals of this process the entire time. At the moment, the Chattanooga plant is one of the few VW factories without a seat on the Global Group Works Council, which has a hand in major decisions like production locations and labor rules. In the end, Patta believes there will be a council at the factory, but with the first round as an indication, it won't come without a fight.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 19 Comments
      Winnie Jenkems
      • 6 Months Ago
      They don't want to unionize. Why is this so hard to understand?
        Carlos Cruz
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Winnie Jenkems
        VW's corporate structure calls for a council, that's how the Germans work. If you don't like it go work for a company that doesn't support unions. Corporations seem to only be "people" when they think the same way the right wing does.
          Chris
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Carlos Cruz
          What part of the workers had a vote and voted against unionizing do you cheerleaders not understand? I know. The thought of people having the right to choose their own destiny just drives you arrogant, left wing control freaks nuts.
          Carlos Cruz
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Carlos Cruz
          They should move production to Germany Pj! a) I'm not buying a North American VW (tons of people here agree) b) I'm sure the 3,200 jobs at the plant, 9,300 jobs indirectly created via suppliers, and $1 Billion investment are not needed in Chattanooga, so pfft. I'm pretty sure Germany will welcome the production back with open arms.
          Pj Taintz
          • 6 Months Ago
          @Carlos Cruz
          and this is america, if they dont like it they should go back to germany
      TooManyCars
      • 6 Months Ago
      UAW... The gift that keeps giving.....
      Cool people
      • 6 Months Ago
      UAW serves no purpose. Failed Campaign already . The Tenn. VW team has shown them the door.. They are a little slow to get the message..
      Steve Wilson
      • 6 Months Ago
      Bring it,union thugs. The WORKERS VOTED. The WORKERS VOTED. The WORKERS VOTED. No union.
      delsolo1
      • 6 Months Ago
      Maybe the teabaggin politicians will keep their nose out of Volkswagen's business.
        Pj Taintz
        • 6 Months Ago
        @delsolo1
        you would things the united auto whiners would move on already
      Lunch
      • 6 Months Ago
      UAW knows they are dying so they are grabbing for anything, even straws. Game over for the UAW.
      Really
      • 6 Months Ago
      VW will move all production to Mexico before this happens
      atc98092
      • 6 Months Ago
      VW needs to understand their workers did not reject a union, they rejected the UAW. Big difference. While I hold no union sympathies (they've shafted me twice), the Works Council configuration that VW uses is not the same model that the UAW works under. The Works Council actually works WITH the company to make things better. Novel concept which the UAW will never grasp.
        Dan Clark
        • 6 Months Ago
        @atc98092
        I couldn't agree more. I work at the Chattanooga plant and most of us did NOT vote against a works council ( hell...we WANT one ) we voted against the UAW. If Mr. Patta had not brought in the UAW this would have already been over and a works council would already be in place.
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