A local Volkswagen employee has filed a court brief asking to overturn the National Labor Relations Board decision that allowed the UAW to bargain for maintenance employees at the local plant.
The employee filed the brief inthe D.C. Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals with free legal help from National Right to Work Foundation attorneys.
The National Right to Work Foundation called the UAW effort to organize only the micro-unit-the smaller group of only skilled employees-a manipulative ploy.
“The gerrymandering scheme that union bosses used to gain a foothold in the Chattanooga Volkswagen plant is unfair to the workers who voted against union representation only to have the ground rules changed and now are forced into a monopoly union,”National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix said in a prepared statement.
In December 2015, 71 percent of maintenanceemployees at the plant voted in favor of representation by the UAW.
That election came after the NLRB ruled that the smaller group of maintenance employees-also called skilled workers-was an appropriate bargaining unit.
Volkswagen has held the position that either all hourly employees-both production and maintenance-take part in the election or none of them.
But UAW Local 42Vice President Steve Cochran, a member of the VW skilled trades unit, said the recent legal move is political interference that the union has seen before.
“Special interests from Washington have no business meddling in the affairs of workers in Chattanooga,” he also said in a prepared statement. “The skilled trades employees of Volkswagen held a free and fair election in December 2015, the NLRB certified the results, and the federal courts have consistently upheld the rights of employees to organize in distinct units within a workforce.”
Cochran said that his organization is renewing the call for VW to stop stalling in federal court and come to the collective bargaining table.
The NLRB describes collective bargaining as an effort to “bargain in good faith about wages, hours, vacation time, insurance, safety practices and other subjects.”
All this comes after a vote among all VW employees failed in February 2014.
“All workers should have the right to decide on union membership through a secret ballot election, like the one that took place in 2014 in which union bosses were rejected, instead of through manipulated micro-unit schemes,” Mix also said.