Statement from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on UAW election at VW Chattanooga


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We continue to stand with the proud men and women at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant who stood up to enormous odds to try to form their own union and to create an historic new model of workplace governance.

Unconscionably, what should have been a local workplace decision by workers and management was turned into an experiment in new forms of right-wing zealotry over issues having nothing to do with how stakeholders decided for themselves the best way to build automobiles and create a strong Chattanooga community. But, make no mistake, the closeness of the results and the courage and tenacity of union supporters prove that this election is a minor setback, and not a permanent defeat. The ferocity of the anti-union forces only reinforces the fact that there is a powerful new form of organizing emerging.

History will show that this narrow loss will not deter the millions of workers — from T-Mobile to musicians to autoworkers — who will continue to stand up against right wing politicians and corporate opponents to chart their own future by working collectively with a union voice.

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