published Friday, May 2nd, 2014

UAW opponents say union still trying to organize Chattanooga VW plant workers

An anti-United Auto Workers website is charging that the union continues to try to organize Chattanooga Volkswagen plant workers and is violating a neutrality agreement with the company.

The open letter was signed by “the Team Members of Volkswagen in Chattanooga who voted NO.” VW plant employees voted against aligning with the union in a February election by a 53 percent to 47 percent margin.

The letter is addressed to Gary Casteel, who headed union organizing at the plant for the UAW.

It complains about a letter Casteel sent to VW employees dated April 21, the day the UAW pulled its National Labor Relations Board appeal for a revote of the election.

Casteel said in that letter that while the union was disappointed with the vote, it still believes a works council “can provide the foundation for productive and respectful labor relations and we have not wavered in our commitment to helping Volkswagen employees achieve this goal.”

The “no2UAW” website said that the union agreed in the neutrality document with VW to discontinue all organizing activities at the Chattanooga plant for one year if it lost the election.

“And you lost the election. So why you are still sending us letters? Looks a lot like “organizing activity” to us…Tell us, Mr. Casteel: What is it about the word “NO” that you don’t understand?”

See more in Saturday’s Times Free Press.

about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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