Mercedes-Benz accused by UAW of failing to fulfill promised raises following Alabama union election

According to the president of the United Auto Workers, Mercedes-Benz has failed to fulfill their commitments made before the union election at the Alabama auto factory. This includes pay raises, better benefits, and other promises that were made.

UAW President Shawn Fain wrote a letter on June 19 to the German works council and IG Metall, a German metalworkers union. In the letter, Fain expressed that the company is informing its workers that it is unable to fulfill the promised improvements due to the union.

At Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant, the UAW worked together with the German workers councils to secure a victorious union vote. These councils consist of elected employees who represent the interests of their fellow workers and work alongside management.

According to Fain, workers are receiving news that the company cannot fulfill their promised wage raises, benefits, and improved working conditions due to objections filed by the UAW regarding the vote at the Tuscaloosa County plant.

In May, employees at the Vance and Woodstock plants voted against unionization, with 2,642 votes against UAW as their union representative and 2,045 in favor.

The employer of the German automaker’s Vance plant faced an unprecedented, illegal anti-union campaign, as per the union’s petition to the National Labor Relations Board. The petition requested to reject the election results and conduct a new election for the employees.

Fain wrote a letter where he accused the company of shifting the blame to the union instead of fulfilling its promises to enhance the workers’ conditions.

In a recent report, it was stated that MBUSI VP of Operations, Rolf Wrona, informed Group Leaders around June 5 that the company would not be able to provide payment to workers during a planned plant shutdown. This decision was based on the company being in “status quo,” a term used in U.S. labor law that mandates unionized employees to notify the union before any changes are made to their working conditions, wages, or benefits.

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Fain argued that since MBUSI is not a unionized company, there should be no existing status quo condition.

According to a spokesperson from Mercedes-Benz, the company has been transparent and informative with all of its Team Members regarding the impact of union representation throughout the union process.

The spokesperson stated that more than 90% of MBUSI Team Members have expressed their opinions, and the company is actively collaborating with its employees to ensure that it remains a preferred employer and maintains a secure and encouraging work environment.

“Our track record demonstrates our commitment to offering competitive compensation and a range of valuable benefits to our team members. While we await the NLRB’s final review of the election, we remain focused on building upon our 25+ years of success as a unified team in Alabama.”

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