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UAW Organizing Alabama, with German Help

United Auto Workers President Bob King has as his top goal organizing a Southeast auto assembly plant.

United Auto Workers President Bob King has as his top goal organizing a Southeast auto assembly plant.

AP Photo/Carlos Osorio

With the strident strains of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana as a soundtrack, the video alternates text — “UAW and IG Metall present the event of the year for all MBUSI workers. Organizing a strong union” — with pictures of workers, many holding “Union Yes” placards.

It’s part of the new effort by the autoworkers’ union to organize workers at Southern plants — not only the Mercedes-Benz plant in Alabama, but also the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tenn. and the Nissan plant in Canton, Miss.

All are plants located in states that tout their right-to-work laws in efforts to attract new industry.

The UAW has tried to organize Southern plants before, but this time it has the backing of the German workers’ union IG Metall.

Workers at five Alabama auto supplier plants are represented by the UAW — Faurecia in Cottondale, Johnson Controls in Cottondale and McCalla, ZF Industries in Tuscaloosa and Inteva in Cottondale.

The union also reports that it has had success organizing casino workers.

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