By on July 27, 2011

What TTAC readers have known for a while already, Germany’s Financial Times has realized: The UAW is trying to get its foot into the door of Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant. Apparently, the UAW is banking on the fact that the plant is new, that Volkswagen is used to working with the unions, and most of all, that wages in Chattanooga are lower than at Daimler, BMW, Toyota and Honda. Financial Times Deutschland reports that a worker makes $14.50 an hour in Chattanooga, $19.50 after three years. Now the German Metal Workers Union IG Metall wants to help the UAW – by establishing a works council in Chattanooga.

That’s nice of them, but may not help the UAW a lot.

A works council is no union. A German works council is given substantial powers – in Germany. It must be consulted for hirings and firings. The works council represents workers vis a vis the management. However, to be effective, a works council must be rooted in law – in Tennessee, not in Wolfsburg. Without such a law, a Chattanooga works council would be nothing more than a social club.

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3 Comments on “A Works Council In Chattanooga? It’s For The Dogs...”

  • avatar

    What’s up with that picture? Are you saying the plant will be going to the dogs? (Union Co. isn’t even in the same area code as Hamilton Co, where the plant is).

  • avatar

    the reason for the German union to try to unionize the US plant is not to help the brothers, but to make US production more costly to VW so that more production stays in German union territory.

    Always consider the source….

  • avatar

    “a Chattanooga works council would be nothing more than a social club.”

    If the UAW does take hold, at least the workers will have another parking lot to smoke pot and drink in during their lunch hour(s).

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