Volkswagen’s Chattanooga Workers Speak Out Against UAW


A grassroots group of Volkswagen Chattanooga workers who oppose the United Auto Workers spoke out this week against the union’s efforts to set up shop at their factory.

The group, Southern Momentum, released the following statement in response to an advertisement paid for by the Center for VW Facts that appeared in The Chattanooga Times Free Press last week. The Center for VW facts was created by a UAW member and Michigan political consultant, according to a press release.

“Thousands of Chattanooga families depend on the success of Volkswagen Chattanooga and our suppliers, and by tearing down the company, the UAW and its cronies are showing yet again that they do not care about our future,” said CB Bitten, a team leader at Volkswagen Chattanooga.

“The disgusting public attacks and increasing intimidation and harassment are desperate and sickening but not at all surprising given the UAW’s track record.”

Southern Momentum first formed ahead of the 2014 election at the Volkswagen Chattanooga facility, which the UAW lost by a vote of 712 to 626.

As The Tennessee Star reported, this time around, UAW officials are seeking outside help to set a foothold in Chattanooga.

When asked about this, a spokesman for the Virginia-based National Right to Work Foundation said “the scandal-ridden union bosses at the UAW really have no shame at all.”

According to its website, the NRTWC is a nonprofit tasked with eliminating coercive union power and compulsory unionism abuses.

“After the Volkswagen workers’ 2014 vote to reject the union, UAW officials sought to overturn their vote on the grounds that workers heard too much information that was critical of unionization from elected leaders from Tennessee,” said NRTWC spokesman Patrick T. Semmens, in an emailed statement to The Tennessee Star.

“Now the very same UAW officials have three UAW-funded out-of-state Senators attempting to interfere with the NLRB’s own established procedures for dealing with election petitions.”

According to The Memphis Commercial Appeal, those three U.S. senators, Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio; Sen. Gary Peters, D-Michigan; and Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Michigan, have questioned Volkswagen about the matter.

“You have to wonder whether the UAW hierarchy knows more details are coming out soon about their massive embezzlement and corruption scandal, and this whole effort is really just about holding the vote before the full scope of the UAW’s sellout of rank-and-file workers is known,” Seemens said.

“The whole situation is a reminder that for UAW officials and their political allies, this push at Volkswagen isn’t about what is best for Volkswagen employees in Chattanooga but about what enhances Detroit-based union bosses’ power.”

According to The Detroit News, federal agents are investigating whether UAW officials took kickbacks after giving business executives contracts to produce union-branded clothes and trinkets.

Brian Rothenberg, spokesman for the Detroit-based UAW International, addressed Semmens’ remarks in an emailed statement.

“The fact is Chattanooga workers filed the petition and want the right to vote a significant majority.  They are the only VW workers in the world without the right to bargain,” Rothenberg said.

“Why should Chattanooga workers be treated differently than any other VW workers or even Spring Hill Tennessee GM workers.”





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8 Thoughts to “Volkswagen’s Chattanooga Workers Speak Out Against UAW”

  1. […] that fight, as reported, a grassroots group of Volkswagen Chattanooga workers who oppose the UAW spoke out against the union’s efforts to set up shop at their […]

  2. Tom Beebe

    Is it worth noting that the outside Senators supporting the UAW efforts in Tennessee are all from states where the UAW controls most, perhaps all, auto plants? Is it POSSIBLE that they want VW’s labor costs to match those in their states to protect not Chattanooga workers but rather their constituents?

  3. Matt

    Sad to see them reject it. True much corruption has been in unions but it is also true they make life better for the workers. Nissan was a horror to work for. Working for GM is A huge improvement. Thanks uaw!

  4. Jeremy

    It is time to reveal the truth. In the old days, the UAW supported and used organizing talent of the Communists to help in the early development and progression of the organization. The cold war era, those communists were being suppressed and purged so to help preserve the U.S. as a free market capitalist society where common people had right and oppertunity to affordable housing and large value assets, this so that many Americans can enjoy and expierianc the American dream without debt usery.
    When Cold War policy ended in the 70’s, those Communists have become forgotten about. Since has infiltrated and move into positions of high rank in government and organizations of strong policy making or influence. They now control the labor unions. What you now see is considered corrupt Communism, it was taboo and poison back then and still is now.
    The UAW Constitution Article 10 Section 7-11 it is a violation and against UAW policy for Communist party member to become union official or representative. The accused is to be tried and convicted , with expulsion from the UAW as penalty.
    No one investigates or enforces the policy, not even the law enforcement or U.S. Judicial Branch.
    1948 Taft and Hartley Act had a anti-Communist provision that made union officials sign an affidavit denying Communist party affiliation.
    1950-1959 Smith Act Trials indicted union officials with hundreds of Communists, 1959, communists in the Supreme Court ruled the trials violated free speech and assembly but this ruling still left the communists to be a national threat.
    Communists labor leaders can negotiate middle class killing policy to allow working class to dissolve and struggle becoming the working poor so to gain support and make foot soldiers for the march for the Communist agenda.

  5. Russ Crouch

    There was a time that the unions did a lot of good for the workers of this country. That time has long past. The only thing they do now is take their money and make life hard for them. The need to get and retain workers has made the unions a thing of the past.

    1. Tyrone

      Sorry Russ, that can not be further from the truth. I’m a Afro American and until I got a UAW job, I saw made to sweep floors while the white guys were put on the high paying jobs. Since being in a UAW member, I am in skilled trades making as much as my co-workers. My co-workers are extremely friendly and teamwork is best ever! I no longer work like a dog for a very small piece of the pie.

  6. Rick

    VW employees did vote and they voted against the UAW. The UAW said if they were voted down the would leave yet here we are. The rest of the world needs to accept that we chose not to be represented by the UAW like GM in Spring Hill.

  7. 83ragtop50

    The good ole UAW won’t give up until it makes a shambles of the VW plant. Who on earth needs some thugs from out of state telling the workers what to do and how to think. Go back to the rust belt where you belong.