Nissan Asks The UAW To 'Cease Their Efforts To Divide' Workers After Failed Union Vote

Aug 5, 2017

Franklin-based Nissan North America wants the United Auto Workers to back off.

Late Friday night, totals were released for the recent union election at Nissan's plant in Canton, Miss., and workers voted 2-to-1 to reject UAW representation. Nissan said "the voice of Nissan employees have been heard."

"Our expectation is that the UAW will respect and abide by their decision and cease their efforts to divide our Nissan family," the automaker said in a statement. "Now that the election is complete, Nissan will focus on bringing all employees back together as one team, building great vehicles and writing our next chapter in Mississippi."

This was the first union vote in Canton. But Nissan's flagship plant in Smyrna twice rejected to the UAW by the same 2-to-1 margin in both 2001 and 1989.

The automaker said it learned from process leading up to the union vote and will continue to improve the "direct relationship" it currently has with employees. Nissan also thanks the National Labor Relations Board for conducting a "fair" election.

But the UAW claims it was anything but fair.

“Perhaps recognizing they couldn’t keep their workers from joining our union based on the facts, Nissan and its anti-worker allies ran a vicious campaign against its own workforce that was comprised of intense scare tactics, misinformation and intimidation,” UAW president Dennis Williams said in a late-night press release.

The UAW filed a new batch of unfair labor practice charges just before the voting ended Friday night, including allegations of threatening a worker with termination and suggesting benefits would be taken away if the UAW won.

The Detroit-based UAW has been working to find a foothold in Southern plants owned by foreign automakers. The union made some headway by organizing a small group of maintenance workers at Volkswagen's plant in Chattanooga, but it has still not been able to strike a collective bargaining agreement.