DETROIT — Months ahead of a federally mandated referendum that could alter how the UAW selects its leaders, President Ray Curry said he supports the current election system over the potential one-member, one-vote model.
“We believe the current delegate system represents every local union around the country having the ability to elect their respective delegates to attend constitutional convention events and bargaining conventions and, as the need may arise under the constitution, any emergency meeting that would need to be facilitated,” he said in his first media roundtable as UAW president. “We would advocate for that to continue to be in process.”
The union is expected in November to hold a referendum vote on whether to adopt a different system, a condition of its six-year consent decree with the federal government following a yearslong corruption scandal that has landed two former presidents and 13 others behind bars.
Curry’s predecessor, Rory Gamble, also supported the current system.
The union’s court-appointed monitor, Neil Barofsky, recently issued interim rules for the referendum, which noted that secret ballots would be sent to members Oct. 12 and that they must be received by Nov. 12.
Traditionally, union leaders have come from a caucus handpicked by outgoing leaders. Former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider argued that the union needed a more open, transparent process to prevent corruption in the future.