By Andre Damon, WSWS.ORG, a socialist organization
Volkswagen’s new plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, made headlines this year as the first US auto assembly plant to pay its entire production workforce the lowest starting wage for new US autoworkers—$14.50 per hour. But now the plant is starting all new production employees at $12 per hour, workers said, setting the bar even lower for autoworker wages.
In order to receive a bevy of state, federal, and local subsidies, Volkswagen promised in 2008 to create 2,000 local jobs at the “full” pay rate. But as production approaches full speed, all new production workers are now being hired in through Aerotek, Volkswagen’s labor contractor, at $12 per hour. In addition to the current production workforce, the factory employs over 500 temporary contract production employees, workers said.