Volkswagen Leaves Door Open For "Co-Determination" In Chattanooga

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon

Though the United Auto Workers recently backed down from challenging the results of the February 2014 organization election held at Volkwagen’s Chattanooga, Tenn. plant before the National Labor Relations Board, Volkswagen has opted to leave the door open for representation via a variation of the works council model used elsewhere.

Just-Auto reports the automaker welcomed the UAW’s withdrawal from the fight, proclaiming that it could now move forward with its tasks of building cars in Chattanooga, securing jobs in Tennessee, and establishing a new form of what it calls “co-determination” within the United States:

Volkswagen Chattanooga is seeking to establish good opportunities for consultation and representation for all its employees, opportunities that are normal practice for the Volkswagen team all over the world – that applies for those employees who voted against the UAW – just as it applies for those who voted in favour.

As for the UAW, outgoing president Bob King said the union was finally ready to “put the tainted election” behind it, while Senator Bob Corker proclaimed the challenge to the results and subsequent withdrawal as “nothing more than a sideshow to draw away from their stinging loss in Chattanooga.”

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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  • Rick T. Rick T. on Apr 25, 2014

    "As for the UAW, outgoing president Bob King said the union was finally ready to “put the tainted election” behind it..." Bless his heart.

  • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Apr 25, 2014

    Just what is the advantage to Volkswagen in a works council? The only thing I can think of is the old saying, hold your friends close, and your enemies even closer (so they can't reach for a weapon).

    • See 3 previous
    • BigWill BigWill on Apr 25, 2014

      @Lorenzo "Is IG Metall so powerful that they can induce VW to cut its own throat, or at least throw away a huge investment in plant and equipment?" IG Metall has a bunch of seats on the VW Board, plus the First Chairman of IG Metall is the Deputy Chair of VW's Supervisory Board - as in second to the Chairman Ferdinand Piëch. Add all that up and one should be able to figure out how much pull IG Metall has at VW.

  • That guy That guy on Apr 26, 2014

    A union not named UAW might have had a shot.

  • Jimal Jimal on Apr 27, 2014

    Dear Senator Corker, We still await the announcement of the second line that you said was coming if/when the UAW vote went the "right way". Now that the UAW has dropped its appeal of the results of the February vote, there is nothing standing in the way of this announcement... except for the possibility that you made up the whole thing.