The United Auto Workers union is showing a renewed interest in unionizing the Volkswagen factory in Chattanooga. Frank Patta, the general secretary of VW’s Global Group Works Council, has said that his representatives will support the union. Patta cites political turmoil as the reason the group lost its previous election for representation, by a vote of 712 to 626.
However, the UAW agreed not to call for another election for at least a year after withdrawing their appeal, so organizing a union for the plant will be complicated. Workers could organize a works council on their own. If the workers decide to wait out the one-year period called for in the agreement made when dropping their appeal, they could try to organize separate portions of the plant.
Patta believes that the factory, which is one of the few Volkswagen factories without representation on the Global Group Works Council, will eventually get a seat. But if the first attempt is a show of what’s to come, it may prove to be a long and difficult process.
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