Loss at Volkswagen plant upends union’s plan for U.S. South
By Bernie Woodall CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee (Reuters) – In a stinging defeat that could accelerate the decades-long decline of the United Auto Workers, Volkswagen AG workers voted against union representation at a Chattanooga, Tennessee plant, which had been seen as organized labor's best chance to expand in the U.S. South. The loss, 712 to 626, capped a sprint finish to a long race and was particularly surprising for UAW supporters, because Volkswagen had allowed the union access to the factory and officially stayed neutral on the vote, while other manufacturers have been hostile to organized labor. UAW spent more than two years organizing and then called a snap election in an agreement with VW.
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