Friday, May 13, 2022

Apple’s leaked anti-union memo warns ‘opportunity’ could disappear

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Apple has been sending anti-union talking points to employees in the United States, according to a new report.

Motherboard received a leaked memo from the iPhone maker attached to an email sent to Apple store managers.

“What makes a store great is a team that works well together,” says one of the talking points. “That can’t always happen when a union represents a store’s team members.”

It continues: “An outside union that doesn’t know Apple or our culture would make things more complex and inflexible. Leaders would not have the flexibility to act in the moment or to cater to each person’s unique needs.”

The memo also threatens that there could be fewer opportunities for Apple employees in a union, as well as “less attention to earnings.”

It states: “Many collective agreements define and limit what a particular worker is allowed to do. I can’t speculate what would happen to career experiences under a union – it would be subject to negotiation – but what if the contract prevented someone from working outside of a narrow job classification? That could mean employees can’t work in another zone or pick up work as stretch assignments.”

It also says Apple employees are “putting many of our interactions in the hands of third parties.”

Research by the Economic Policy Institute found that “unions improve wages and benefits for all workers, not just union members. They help reduce income inequality by ensuring that all Americans, not just the affluent elite, share in the benefits of their jobs.”

In the United States, 65 percent of all Americans support unions; including 83 percent Democrats, 64 percent Independents, and 45 percent Republicans as of 2020, according to American analytics firm Gallup.

It is not known how many Apple employees received a copy of this memo, but it was reportedly sent to several Apple Stores.

Apple has not responded to this that of the independent However, seeking comment ahead of the time of publication, Motherboard said that “it’s fortunate to have incredible retail team members and we really appreciate everything they bring to Apple.” We are pleased to offer full-time and part-time employees very strong compensation and benefits, including healthcare, tuition reimbursement, new parental leave, paid family leave, annual stock grants and many other benefits.”

Recently, three Apple stores in Atlanta, New York City and Towson Maryland filed union elections. Any of these would be the first Apple Retail Union in the United States. Apple has reportedly hired Littler Mendelson, a leading anti-union law firm, to represent him.

Apple isn’t the only tech giant reportedly taking anti-union stances. Amazon fired two warehouse workers involved in a campaign to unionize the retail giant’s Staten Island campus following union elections at the company’s New York City facilities.

Mat Cusick, the union’s communications director, received a letter from Amazon saying he was fired “for quitting the job,” according to a copy of the letter seen by CNBC.

She shared a statement from Amazon spokeswoman Kelly Nantel LatestPageNews said Mr. Cusik “has not shown up for work since an approved vacation ended at the end of April, although our team has reached out to him and even extended his vacation.”

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