Five years after the union’s stunning defeat at the hands of VW workers in 2014, it appears the UAW has lost again.
CHATTANOOGA, TN—Five years after the scandal-plagued United Auto Workers’ first failed attempt to unionize Volkswagen’s workers in Chattanooga, the UAW has lost another plant-wide vote.
On Friday evening, the National Labor Relations Board counted the ballots cast by employees over two days of voting and the results were 833 against unionization and 776 in favor of unionization.
“The election results this week do little to change the narrative of the UAW’s struggles in the South,” writes Dave Jamieson, HuffPosts’ labor writer. “Just last year, the union lost a lopsided election at a Nissan plant in Canton, Mississippi.”
Although some are attempting to put a ‘better luck next time’ spin on the UAW’s loss.
“The UAW lost by a margin of only 57 votes losing 776-833,” wrote Mike Elk, an ardent union writer, to his subscribers [Emphasis added.]
“Losing twice has gotta be tough for the UAW to swallow, but they cut the margin down even further from a tough loss in 2014 (that vote was 712-626),” HuffPost’s Jamieson tweeted to his followers. “My guess is we’ll be back here again in a few years.”
For its part, the UAW is blaming its second loss at VW on “broken” U.S. labor laws.
“Our labor laws are broken,” said UAW spokesman Brian Rothenberg. “Workers should not have to endure threats and intimidation in order to obtain the right to collectively bargain. The law doesn’t serve workers, it caters to clever lawyers who are able to manipulate the NLRB process.”
The UAW today called on Congress to take a comprehensive look at the country’s labor laws and NLRB rules that made it almost impossible for Volkswagen workers to form a union. https://t.co/Qlge5pUFvw
— UAW (@UAW) June 15, 2019
Unfortunately for the UAW, the fact of the matter is, for many Southern auto workers, the letters U.A.W. stands for Union Ain’t Wanted and once they had the chance, a majority of VW’s workers expressed that sentiment in a secret-ballot election—just as they did five years ago.
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