Bloomberg Law
March 16, 2023, 9:36 PM

Nissan Techs at Tennessee Plant Vote Down Union Representation

Parker Purifoy
Parker Purifoy

Nissan North America Inc. workers voted against unionization with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers in an election Thursday.

Nine of the tool-and-die technicians at the plant in Smyrna, Tenn., voted to be represented by IAM, while 62 voted against union representation. There were no voided or challenged ballots in the election, according to a National Labor Relations Board spokesperson.

The vote marks another failed union drive at a foreign automaker’s US plant, workplaces where organized labor has historically struggled. It was also the culmination of a two-year battle to hold the election after the company opposed the small unit size and argued that any election should involve all 7,000 workers at the plant.

The NLRB rejected these arguments in a decision last month, ruling that the tool-and-die workers could be considered a “craft unit” because they work and are supervised separately from workers in the rest of the facility.

Nissan spokesperson Lloryn Love-Carter said in a statement after the vote count that the company respects the results.

“Workers at a Nissan manufacturing facility have again voted overwhelmingly against union representation and elected to maintain their direct relationship with the company,” she said. “We remain focused on working with employees to drive our future forward together.”

IAM spokesperson DeLane Adams said the results were due to the delay caused by the NLRB’s litigation of the case.

“The delayed decision from the National Labor Relations Board had a chilling effect on this campaign,” Adams said. “The IAM will continue to support these workers so we will be prepared for them to join our union when the time is right again.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Parker Purifoy in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Martha Mueller Neff at; Laura D. Francis at