On Thursday and Friday this week, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is conducting an election at Volkswagen’s plant in Chattanooga, TN to determine whether or not a majority of the company’s maintenance workers wish to be unionized into a “micro-union” by the United Auto Workers.
Despite a company appeal of the NLRB’s ruling that a micro-union is an appropriate bargaining unit in that the company’s operates with a “one team” concept—with maintenance and production workers working side-by-side—the NLRB election is moving forward.
In a letter to their VW co-workers, UAW rival, the American Council of Employees, blasted the UAW’s strategy of divide and conquer in order to get its foot in the door in Chattannoga.
“Unfortunately, the UAW, admitting their failure to secure support of a true majority,” the letter states, “denied us the right to vote together as a unified workforce, opting instead to subdivide maintenance workers with no concern for how this might negatively impact employees’ long-term interests.”
“As we all know,” the letter goes on to state, “Volkswagen and our facility are in the midst of a crisis. We need unity now more than ever.”
“The timing of this “ambush election” amounts to the UAW kicking us while we are down, and puts all of our jobs at risk. Is this the sort of organization we want speaking on our behalf?”
Unless the NLRB impounds the ballots of this week’s vote, pending the outcome of VW’s appeal, the election results should be known by Friday evening.