UAW releases statement in response to indictment of former FCA exec and former UAW VP's wife

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DETROIT – UAW President Dennis Williams released a statement Wednesday after a former executive of Fiat Chyrsler Automobiles and the wife of the former UAW vice president were indicted on federal charges, including conspiracy and tax evasion.

READ: Former FCA exec and former UAW VP's wife indicted on federal charges

The statement said the UAW has zero tolerance for such corruption.

Read the full statement below:

The UAW is appalled at the allegations contained in the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) indictment, which constitute a betrayal of trust by a former vice president of our union.

The UAW has zero tolerance for corruption or wrongdoing of this kind at any level. While the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center (NTC) is a separate entity from the UAW that receives no union dues, the fact is that the abuses alleged in the DOJ indictment dishonored the union and the values we have upheld for more than 80 years.

The UAW had absolutely no knowledge of the fraudulent activities detailed in this indictment until they were brought to our attention by the government. We nevertheless take responsibility for not doing more to exert our influence over the governance policies of the NTC, which might have uncovered this corruption sooner.

Since being made aware of these allegations, the UAW has cooperated fully with the DOJ and continues to share information with the government. The UAW also hired independent outside counsel to conduct an internal investigation into these allegations

Importantly, the UAW worked with the NTC and Fiat Chrysler to implement a range of measures aimed at enhancing transparency and internal controls at the NTC to reduce the risk of any future recurrence of these activities.

These steps include:

  • Requiring an annual independent audit of the NTC’s finances
  • Hiring a full-time in-house controller
  • Requiring annual budgets for each program/department and implementing a budget review process. Budgets are approved by the NTC board of directors
  • Adopting a plan requiring review and approval of credit card statements for payment by two officers and the controller
  • Formalizing a written credit card policy, including what is/is not permissible
  • Implementing an interested persons questionnaire and a conflict of interest policy and creating a hotline to report future suspected wrongdoing
  • Retaining new legal counsel
  • Requiring all new vendors to be approved by two officers and the controller
  • Instituting a formal process for vendor procurement
  • Instituting a ban on all charitable donations from the NTC to any charity run or controlled by a UAW official

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About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.