UPDATE: Ramsey hopes VW votes to continue business without union - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Ramsey hopes VW votes to continue business without union

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

UPDATE: Claude Ramsey, the former deputy to the Governor has released a statement on UAW Organizing Volkswagen

"I hope the employees at VW will vote to maintain their current way of doing business and this is without a union.
 
These employees came to work for VW without a union and have been recognized for building an award-winning automobile.  Now they must choose whether to let UAW into the Volkswagen plant.  They have good jobs, with good working conditions, good benefits and good pay.  Why would they choose to change?  Why pay dues for something you already have?  What is the real benefit of a union?
 
Volkswagen says they need to reduce expenses in their supply chain as they move forward.  Will the UAW help do that?  I think not. In fact, many suppliers have already said they will not locate close to the plant if the UAW organizes it, and the further they are the higher VW's costs will be.
 
It's the employees' decision and they should be able to make that decision on their own without coercion from either side.  If so, I believe the employees of VW will vote to stay the course and vote NO on the UAW".


 

The controversial debate on whether or not to unionize Chattanooga's Volkswagen plant will now be decided by employees.

Company officials announced Monday a secret ballot election will be held next week, for workers to decide if they want union representation.

Channel 3 went looking for answers about what will happen to employees, who don't want to be a part of it.

You may remember back in November, petitioners against the union requested a vote

"Let's just do a ballet vote. That's the honest way of doing it," said Travis Finnell.

They got their wish and next week it could be down to a single vote to decide if Volkswagen will have union representation.

A simple majority of 50 percent of the votes, plus one, has to be obtained for it to be certified.

Team member at Volkswagen, Justin King says he's for the union and thinks a vote is the best way to make the decision.

"I think in the end, everyone agreed a secret ballot election is the most fair and unbiased way to do things," said King.

But we wondered, what happens if it goes through and a current or future employee doesn't want to be a part of the union. Do they have to join?

"Tennessee is a right to work state so no one has to join," said King.

Channel 3 asked what the difference would be between an employee that was a part of the union and one that wasn't, will their benefits change; less pay?

"In terms of hours and working conditions, there would be no difference," said King. "People who are hired would come in under whatever collective bargaining agreement we establish, whether it's pay or benefits, whatever we negotiate at the bargaining table would affect anyone, regardless of whether they join or not," said King.

However, King says if they aren't union employees, their voice won't be heard when the union casts their ballots on hot topics within the company.

"They wouldn't be able to vote on contracts or union positions," said King.

Which King says he wants to be a part of.

"It gives you more of an ownership stake in the company, it encourages employees to care more about the work they're doing and the ideas and suggestions they have," said King.

However, other employees don't seem to agree, saying on their no2uaw.com website that it will be harder for nonunion employees if Volkswagen is unionized, stating it becomes unlawful for your employer to deal with you directly with regards to wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment.

Employees will vote February 12-14.

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