VW Chattanooga Management Says Union Vote Will Not Be Diverted "By Outside Political Groups"

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Volkswagen Chattanooga management said Saturday that "outside political groups" would not divert VW in connection with the upcoming controversial employee vote on whether the plant will be unionized.

VW has worked well with unions in the past and will continue to do so if the employees vote to join the United Auto Workers, it was stated.

Top VW management said the decision is up to the workers, and VW will respect either decision.

Former County Mayor and Deputy Governor Claude Ramsey last week held a press conference urging the workers not to vote for the union. Legislative leaders, including Gerald McCormick and Bo Watson, plan a similar press conference on Monday. Senator Bob Corker has strongly decried the union move.

Volkswagen Chattanooga CEO and Chairman Frank Fischer said, "Volkswagen America is committed to innovation and productivity in its manufacturing plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to serve its American customers in the best way possible. The jobs we've created here and the future we're building together go hand in hand. Our commitment to Tennessee is a long term investment.

"The Volkswagen Group is proud of its record of cooperation and co-determination between employees, management and the communities in which we live and work. Our Works Councils are key to our success and productivity. It is a business model that helped to make Volkswagen the second largest car company in the world.  Our plant in Chattanooga has the opportunity to create a uniquely American Works Council, in which the company would be able to work cooperatively with our employees and ultimately their union representatives, if the employees decide they wish to be represented by a union. 

“Volkswagen America has been fortunate to have strong local partners here in Chattanooga and we will continue to work with them as we move forward together.”

Volkswagen Chattanooga Vice President for Human Resources Sebastian Patta said, "Volkswagen America understands how important openness and transparency are in the workplace. Democracy is an American ideal, and being open with our employees is a central pillar of our Works Councils.  Volkswagen’s commitment to these values is one of the reasons why, although the law allowed us to recognize the UAW without an election on the basis of a card check, we asked the NLRB to conduct this election.  A secret ballot, one-worker-one-vote election furthers our values at Volkswagen America and will help us grow stronger in the future with our employees.

"Outside political groups won't divert us from the work at hand: innovating, creating jobs, growing, and producing great automobiles. Fact is: Our employees are free to discuss and state their opinions at the plant and to distribute campaign materials, including flyers and other literature, irrespective of whether they are in favor of or against a union. We wish to point out that our employees who are against union representation as well as those in favor have consistently taken advantage of and exercised these rights.  Volkswagen America is committed to defending our employees’ legal right to make a free choice. It is their decision. Volkswagen America will respect whatever choice they make.”


Police Seek Lookout Mountain Man, 73, Missing Since Friday; Van Reportedly Found At Trion

The Dade County Sheriff's Department is looking for Freddie Wooten, 73. Mr. Wooten was driving a 2002 Ford Windstar minivan with the license plate number, THM1418. He was last seen wearing a light blue shirt and navy pants. His van was reportedly found in a pool in Trion, Ga., with no sign of him. Anyone who has seen Mr. Wooten, or has information regarding the case, ... (click for more)

Dog Saves Woman From Fire At Highway 58 Area

A homeowner reported that her dog saved her life early Friday morning. At 12:52 a.m. , the homeowner called 911 reporting a fire at 8411 Providence Road (Highway 58 area). The Highway 58 Volunteer Fire Department responded and arrived reporting a log cabin with flames coming through the roof. Firefighters worked quickly to contain the fire, but it was a challenge due to  ... (click for more)

Don't Be Quick To Discard Common Core

Let's not be too quick to discard Common Core. A recent article in the Tennessean on  Sunday detailed Common Core successes the Kingsport, Tennessee school system.  I encourage you to read it.  The article also noted that Tennessee was recently ranked as one of the fastest improving states in education after implementing portions of the Common Core curriculum ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UVa --Time For Change

The University of Virginia is, by any measure, one of the finest universities in the world. I have long admired it, whether covering dozens of sports events, cavorting with countless friends, or benefitting repeatedly from the surgical skills of the late world-class humanitarian Frank McCue. But today there is a terrible pall over “Mr. Jefferson’s university” – no, make that a ... (click for more)

Football Mocs Receive No. 8 Seed For FCS Playoffs

The hugs, high fives and first pumps by the Tennessee at Chattanooga football players late Sunday morning let everyone know in Moc Nation that the Blue and Gold had received a highy-coveted seed and would be hosting a second round NCAA FCS playoff game Dec 6 at Finley Stadium at 1 p.m. "When the television announcers called our name as the No.8 seed (out of eight ... (click for more)

Missouri Hangs On, Turns Back Tennessee, 29-21

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Missouri pin-pricked Joshua Dobbs’ bubble of invincibility Saturday night at Neyland Stadium. The nationally ranked Tigers drove a stake in Tennessee’s heart with Maty Mauk’s 73-yard touchdown pass to Jimmie Hunt in the fourth quarter, held Dobbs in check most of the game and beat the Vols, 29-21, before 95,821 fans on a chilly night on the banks of the Tennessee ... (click for more)