U.S. Rep Mark Pocan
Press Release

Pocan, Kildee, Dingell Urge Volkswagen to Support Employees’ Right to Unionize

"Unfortunately, in recent weeks the company invited Tennessee Governor Bill Lee, an outspoken opponent of unionization, to speak to its employees at a closed-door session."

By - Jun 7th, 2019 03:29 pm

WASHINGTON, DC U.S. Representatives Mark Pocan (WI-02), Dan Kildee (MI-05), and Debbie Dingell (MI-12) today sent a letter urging Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. to support their employees’ right to unionize at the company’s Chattanooga, Tennessee plant. Given the recent reports of anti-union campaigns, Members believe it is imperative to protect employees’ rights to organize and they are requesting information from Volkswagen on how the company is protecting the integrity of the upcoming vote to unionize.

“We previously wrote Volkswagen in July of 2016 to encourage you to respect your worker’s rights to organize with the United Auto Workers (UAW), so we were heartened by your initial commitment to neutrality throughout this election process,” Members wrote. “Unfortunately, in recent weeks the company invited Tennessee Governor Bill Lee, an outspoken opponent of unionization, to speak to its employees at a closed-door session; it sought counsel from the notorious union avoidance firm Littler Mendelson; and it recently established a website targeting employees with inflammatory articles about the UAW. These actions make us question Volkswagen’s neutrality.”

Specifically, Members are asking the following questions:

  • How is Volkswagen keeping its commitment to neutrality?
  • How is Volkswagen ensuring that its Chattanooga employees remain free of intentional or unintentional intimidation or threats from the company during the election process?
  • How will Volkswagen ensure that workers’ rights to take collective action free from intimidation or threats are respected after the election takes place, no matter the result?

The full letter is available here.

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