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Local Unions

On the Front Lines: How Our Local Unions Work

From handling grievances to solving health and safety problems to bargaining local contracts to grassroots political action, much of the most important day-to-day work of the our union takes place at the local level.

The UAW has a strong tradition of local union autonomy. UAW members elect their local union leaders, question their officers at membership meetings, propose programs and policies, vote on local union actions and expenditures, vote on contracts and -- if necessary -- strike actions.

  • Each local union is made up of members employed in the defined bargaining unit or units of one or more employers. A local union with more than one bargaining unit is called an amalgamated local.
  • Under the UAW Constitution, each local union must adopt bylaws and conduct open and fair elections of officers, trustees and certain other leaders.
  • The local union's governing body is the membership meeting. The meeting is held at a regular, specified time and place, and is open to all members in good standing.
  • The local union executive board consists of the president, vice president, financial secretary, recording secretary, sergeant-at-arms, guide and three trustees. The executive officers are elected by secret ballot vote of the entire membership; the term of office is three years. The executive board conducts the affairs of the local union; the board's actions must be approved by a majority vote of the members attending the regular membership meeting.