The Nissan union battle is heating up - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

The Nissan union battle is heating up

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
CANTON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The battle for a union at Nissan is expanding past the walls of the Canton plant. Voices of support for the union are growing to include celebrity quotes and videos.

RELATED: Nissan videos oppose union

"Mississippi has a history of people's rights being disregarded," said P. Diddy in a video posted on Facebook.

Meanwhile, Governor Phil Bryant has gotten in on the battle against the union, making a Facebook post last week. He called the move to unionize a "con game to destroy private market success."

The president of the Mississippi AFL-CIO says it's probably just the beginning of the back and forth, even though Mississippi already has hundreds of unions.

"There's more to come I'm sure in the last two or three days," said Robert Shaffer, Mississippi AFL-CIO President/Secretary-Treasurer. "You'll have a situation like Tennessee had where the whole government in the state is going to go against."

Nissan sent this statement. 

The 6,400 Canton employees are a key part of the Nissan family, and they enjoy good, stable, safe jobs with some of the best wages and benefits in Mississippi. Nissan Canton workers enjoy pay and benefits that are among the best in Mississippi, a safe work environment, and a history of job security that exceeds UAW-organized plants. We do not believe that UAW representation is in the best interest of Nissan Canton and the people who work here. However, it is ultimately up to the employees to decide. Nissan Canton’s success has been built upon the direct relationship we have with each other. Given the UAW’s history of strikes, layoffs, and plant closures, their presence could harm the plant’s global competitiveness.

"All they want is a voice in the workplace and a contract gives you that," noted Shaffer.

But Marvin Cooke has worked at the plant 14 years and intends to vote "No".

"I don't feel like I need to pay anyone, a third party, to represent me, something I think I can do very well myself," explained Cooke.

One of the notable components of the campaign for the union is that they frequently use the phrase that workers rights are civil rights. Cooke said he thinks that's just another tactic to sway the vote.

"I think they're using it against blacks, trying to influence blacks to go a certain way for the UAW," said Cooke. "Because 80% of the plant is black."

The two-day election is set for August 3-4.

READ MORE: Nissan sets date for union election

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