VW Negotiates With UAW Over Works Council At Chattanooga Plant

Sep 6, 2013

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Employees at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant have been let into the loop on a discussion among company officials and representatives with the United Auto Workers.                                    

Last week, Volkswagen officials began confidential talks with the United Auto Workers, regarding a possible German-style works council at the company’s Chattanooga facility. In a letter, Volkswagen officials told plant employees that such a council can only be established in the United States through an established trade union and employees will be in charge of making any decision concerning union representation.

Labor representatives on Volkswagen’s supervisory board are in favor of organized labor at the facility and have said it’s unfair for the company to have organized labor at every major facility around the world except the Chattanooga plant. It’s possible that the issue could influence the company’s decision on whether to build another vehicle model in Tennessee. 

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and US Senator Bob Corker both argue that union representation would make it more difficult for the state to entice other large manufacturers.