More drama in the ongoing Volkswagen unionization fight in Chattanooga: Volkswagen USA is not keen on the union, while Volkswagen’s management board is divided on the matter. One thing that seems certain is the prospect of a secret ballot vote on the union, according to Reuters.
The head of Volkswagen’s Works Council may soon be paying a visit to workers at Chattanooga to discuss the prospect of a works council. Reuters reports that Bernd Osterloh will be headed down south for a “dialogue” about representation. The UAW will not be present at the talks, but representatives of both VW and IG Metall, Germany’s largest labor union, will be in attendance.
Despite the UAW’s absence, the union and IG Metall have their respective ties, with UAW head Bob King acting as IG Metall’s labor representative on Opel’s supervisory board. The meeting is also occurring as the anti-union camp digs in its heels with a campaign aimed at thwarting the UAW’s organization drive.
A group of workers at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga, Tennessee plant is circulating a petition aimed at stopping the UAW’s attempt to organize the plant.
This weekend was the end-of-summer graduation at Auburn, and like all such events, it brought an avalanche of rental cars to our Loveliest Village on the Plains™. Amidst the ubiquitous Chryslerbishis and engineering-excellence-cum-fleet-staple Camrys, I spotted a couple of newish Jettas and Passats wandering about town, crooked rental bar stickers applied with obvious indifference. I saw one particular rental Jetta sitting in the parking lot not far from the bookstore when I went to pick up some cut-price tomes. Coated in dust and wearing those ugly DUI-style New York plates, it was a forlorn sight. I couldn’t help but think of it as a reminder that the road to hell can be paved with tax breaks as often as it’s paved with good intentions; at least that’s the case if you happen to be governor of Tennessee.
Next up in the “we couldn’t make this shit up” category – PSA and Citroen were hit by strikes after workers were called out for being unproductive.
A merger between the Canadian Auto Workers union and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union passed a ratification vote Monday, which will see the two unions merge and create the largest private-sector union in Canada. The new union won’t be limited strictly to workers either.
More bad news from PSA – production of the brand-new Peugeot 208 subcompact will be cut by one third, as PSA grapples with an imploding market for small cars in Europe.
Good news for Canada’s manufacturing sector; GM has confirmed plans to add a third shift to the Oshawa Flex Line to help meet demand for the 2014 Chevrolet Impala.
With a CAW labor contract expected to be announced today, Fiat has confirmed that cars built in Italy will be exported to markets like the United States, as Fiat looks beyond its ailing home market for growth.
With negotiations between the CAW moving as quick as a French bureaucrat, Ford is offering eligible workers a new car and a $50,000 buyout as an early retirement gift, while Chrysler is offering the CAW nothing in the way of new jobs.
CAW members ratified an agreement with Ford with 82 percent in favor of the four-year labor deal that brings an overhaul to the automaker’s pension plan for assembly plant workers, and extends the new hire wage climb process.