The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) has settled massive allegations against the United Auto Workers Union (UAW), exposing what federal prosecutors described as a culture of corruption among its leadership built around kick-back schemes, embezzlement and other illegal activities. The investigation has led to 15 convictions and some union members say the situation has taken away trust in the union's leadership.
A proposed settlement includes a six-year period of independent oversight by a court-appointed monitor. Further provisions in the proposed settlement require a way for union members to potentially change the way it elects its leadership.
The investigation is one of the largest of a major labor union in decades and has led to the convictions of two former UAW presidents. Further investigations are ongoing and there may be future criminal charges. And yet, many considered the proposed settlement a victory for the union, as federal prosecutors say they will not pursue a racketeering lawsuit against the union itself.
The prosecution tied the UAW'sleadership to a scheme where hundreds of thousands of dollars in union funds were used to pay for villas, golf outings, expensive meals, cigars and other expenses for labor leaders and their associates. The immediate past UAW president apologized to UAW members and asked for forgiveness.
This is part of our January 2021 Newsletter.
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