Volkswagen Group of America workers in Chattanooga, Tenn., have launched a campaign to join the United Auto Workers (UAW) union.
“Over 1,000 workers have signed union authorization cards in less than a week and gone public with their union drive at Volkswagen’s only US plant in Chattanooga,” UAW said in a press release on Thursday.
The union called the move “a surprise breakthrough in the UAW’s national campaign to organize all non-union autoworkers at 13 companies.”
The UAW noted that over 30% of VW workers in Chattanooga have joined the movement, “marking a major milestone in their organizing campaign.”
The union added that this growing trend among non-union autoworkers across the US “builds off the success of the UAW’s ‘Stand-Up’ Strike” at the Detroit-area “Big Three” automakers. Around 50,000 workers struck for over 40 days starting in mid-September to “win record contracts at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis.”
“People are standing up like never before,” Steve Cochran, a VW employee and a leader of the workers moving to unionize at the automaker, said in the release. “There are a lot of young workers in the plant now and this generation wants respect.”
A spokesperson for VW USA did not return a request for comment by time of publication.
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