VW Union Vote: Cornell Labor Experts Available for Media

Article ID: 613824

Released: 14-Feb-2014 2:50 PM EST

Source Newsroom: Cornell University

Expert Pitch

Three days of a union-organizing vote at the Chattanooga, Tennessee Volkswagen plant ends today. This special election will have a widespread impact on labor organization and the structure of unions themselves in the United States. Two Cornell University automotive and labor-law experts are available for media comment.

Art Wheaton, automotive industry expert and senior extension associate at Cornell’s ILR School:

“U.S. labor law requires VW to have a union in order for the works councils to be legal. If Volkswagen workers vote for the union it is expected to have a ripple effect on other auto manufacturers in the Southern United States and their suppliers.”


Lowell Turner, director of the Worker Institute at Cornell’s ILR School and a former union representative from San Francisco.

“Union representation will lead to the establishment of a German-style works council, the first ever in the U.S. Every VW plant in the world has both union representation and a works council – except Chattanooga – it’s the VW culture.”


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