Five workers at Volkswagen Group's Chattanooga site in Tennessee have filed a petition at the United States National Labor Relations Board for a chance to challenge the United Auto Workers bid to overturn the results of the recent union election at the plant. The five workers, supported by attorneys at the anti-union National Right to Work Foundation, are asking for permission to dispute UAW’s petition with NLRB calling for an overturn of the results of the Feb. 12-14 election on the grounds that comments by Tennessee politicians before the voting improperly influenced the outcome.
The foundation contends that unless these workers are heard, there might be no one to resist the UAW union.
While VW was officially neutral on the UAW's organizing push, it openly discussed with the union about setting up a German-style labor council to provide workers in Chattanooga a voice in VW's corporate decisions. VW and UAW also inked a "neutrality agreement" before the vote allowing union organizers to make their case to workers inside the site before the election.
"Based on Volkswagen management's actions leading up to this point, these workers are concerned that VW will not actively defend their vote to remain free from union boss control," Mark Mix, president of the foundation, said in a statement. "That's why these workers have filed a motion to intervene."
The UAW's contention to the NLRB will depend on comments made by government officials like US Senator Bob Corker, who said on Feb. 12 that if workers at the site voted against the union, the plant would be expanded to produce a new SUV that is in development.
Site CEO Frank Fischer, however, quickly dismissed Corker's comments, saying that the election was unrelated to either the expansion decision or production assignments for the site. [source: TheDetroitNews]