Apple Stores employees in New York, Maryland, and Atlanta are going to cast their vote on unionization, and to deter the process, the tech giant has adopted different tactics; held one-o-one meetings with store employees, provided talking points to store leaders and a senior executive of retail visited the Maryland store to listen.
Recently, the company held captive audience meetings at the Cumberland Mall store in Atlanta which the employees allege are violating the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).
Apple’s “captive audience meetings” violate the NLRA claim that pro-union store employees in Atlanta
According to the report, the organization behind the union drive at the Cumberland Mall store in Atlanta “The Communications Workers of America” has filed an unfair labor practice claiming that the company’s captive audience meetings violate the NLRA.
The store employees filed for a union election in April demanding higher wages, better working conditions, and other benefits.
Captive audience meetings are a controversial tactic in which workers are required by their bosses to attend meetings with anti-union messaging. Historically, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has allowed captive audience meetings up until the 24-hour period before an election.
However, a memo from NLRB general counsel Jennifer Abruzzo dated April 7, 2022, stated that such meetings are in violation of the National Labor Relations Act and the board will take “aggressive” actions such tactics.
“This license to coerce is an anomaly in labor law, inconsistent with the Act’s protection of employees’ free choice,” Abruzzo wrote. “It is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of employers’ speech rights.”
Apple is also facing an investigation by the U.S. National Labor agency on a complaint of workplace harassment and abuse filed by former senior engineering program manager Ashley Gjovik.