Union Employs Coercion and Illegal Threats at General Motors Plant; Labor Board Complaint Cites Bully Tactics Under UAW's `New Unionism'
7 March 1997Union Employs Coercion and Illegal Threats at General Motors Plant; Labor Board Complaint Cites Bully Tactics Under UAW's `New Unionism'
SPRING HILL, Tenn. March 7 -- In a major embarrassment to United Auto Workers (UAW) union brass, Right to Work attorneys today announced their success in garnering an unfair labor practice complaint from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) against the UAW union after organized labor officials used illegal threats in an attempt to coerce and intimidate General Motors workers at the Saturn plant. The labor board complaint, which names both the UAW International Union and Local 1853, results from a charge, filed by attorneys with the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation on behalf of a class of Saturn workers who are victims of an ongoing smear and intimidation campaign launched by Local 1853 officials. For targeting workers who dared to dissent, UAW officials will face a trial before a federal labor judge on July 2. "This proves that the UAW union's claim that they are running some sort of 'new unionism' at the Saturn plant is merely a hoax," said Timothy McConville, vice president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation which offers free legal aid to the victims of compulsory unionism abuses. "In fact, Local 1853 is employing the same bully tactics, the same threats, and the same coercion for which UAW union officials are notorious around the country." The complaint, issued late this week on behalf of Earl R. Lee of Pulaski and a class of Saturn employees, details the union's violation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by illegally penalizing, "restraining, and coercing" employees who have chosen to exercise their Foundation-won and statutory right to resign from the union. In addition to smearing Saturn workers who merely exercise their rights under the Tennessee Right to Work Law, UAW officials brand these workers with the title "dishonorably withdrawn." Then, the union officials persecute workers with a discriminatory policy that forces them to fork over all "back dues" if they ever choose to rejoin the union in the future. "UAW union bosses have continually bullied Saturn employees to prevent them from exercising their freedoms," said McConville. "Then, these union officials bitterly smear and threaten workers when they have the courage to stand up for themselves." Foundation attorneys indicate that these illegal penalties are designed to intimidate workers and prevent them from ever resigning in the first place, in direct violation of Tennessee's Right to Work Law. The law protects workers' freedom to choose whether to join a labor union. The illegal seizure and use of an estimated $500 million in compulsory union dues on politics this year has led many employees to reconsider their union membership. However, millions of these workers who object to the illegal seizure of union dues for Big Labor's politics are continually faced with unlawful attacks by union officials, and many workers are even threatened with the loss of their jobs. The complaint, issued late this week, marks the most recent action in the Foundation's long battle for employee freedom at the Saturn plant, dating back to the mid 1980s. "Years ago, UAW bigwigs cut a back-door deal with Saturn to force workers to accept the union's 'representation' under the guise of a new way of doing business," stated McConville. "Instead, the UAW union chiefs are going about business as usual, pulling every dirty trick in the book to hold workers under their yoke." Foundation attorneys seek an NLRB unfair labor practice ruling, which would strike down the illegal union policy, force the UAW union to withdraw all illegal threats against Saturn workers, and notify every worker of their right to resign at will and cut off all seizures of their dues. The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation is assisting thousands of employees in over 400 cases nationwide and can be reached toll-free at 800-336-3600. SOURCE National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, Inc.
CONTACT: Stefan Gleason or Tim McConville, 800-336-3600, or 703-321-8510,
both of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation