A new report from a government watchdog highlights continuing efforts to root out corruption in the United Auto Workers (UAW) labor union.
Per The Detroit News, UAW Monitor Neil Barofsky has filed a 35-page report as part of an ongoing effort to reform the union following a highly publicized corruption scandal. Since taking the position, Baroksky has opened 19 investigations into UAW corruption, while also taking steps to penalize Danny Trull, who served as top deputy to now-disgraced former UAW president Gary Jones. Trull is now facing charges for embezzling union assets, and has since agreed to be expelled and debarred from the UAW for life.
Barofsky was previously installed as part of a consent decree to settle criminal allegations against the UAW following the revelation of corruption among high-ranking UAW officials, who were accused of taking and paying bribes, breaking labor laws, and stealing money from union members. The scandal led to 18 convictions and expanded government oversight of the UAW and Stellantis NV.
Despite calls for reform, the latest 35-page report describes union leaders as withholding information, failing to disclose active investigations into union officials, and concealing a union-led investigation into corruption, which would appear to be in violation of the agreement between the union and prosecutors.
In a statement, UAW spokesperson Sandra Engle said that the “UAW remains committed to the process of rebuilding trust, creating robust reforms and transforming the culture of our union. We have proven that with a myriad of already implemented changes to policies and the creation of processes that ensure accountability. The report is lengthy and documents a sometimes-difficult process, but it ends on a note that we are on the right path.”
Looking ahead, over 1,000 UAW members and leaders are set to meet in Detroit for the union’s quadrennial constitutional convention, during which which members will debate policy and constitutional amendments. This year will mark the first time in which UAW international officers will be decided by direct elections. The UAW represents an estimated 48,500 GM workers in the U.S.