Apple interrogated staff, restricted flier posting, and held mandatory anti-union speeches, body claims

Apple World Trade Center
Apple World Trade Center (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Apple has been accused of some heavy-handed union-busting moves at its New York World Trade Center store.
  • A National Labor Relations Board filing reportedly alleges that Apple interrogated staff, restricted the posting of fliers, and made employees attend mandatory anti-union speeches.
  • A similar filing for an Atlanta store claims Apple held "captive audience meetings" that employees are required to attend.

A new filing with the National Labor Relations Board claims that Apple store staff at its New York World Trade Center store were required to attend mandatory anti-union speeches, restricted from posting fliers, and interrogated, according to a new report.

From Bloomberg:

Apple Inc. violated federal labor law by interrogating staff, restricting the posting of union fliers and requiring employees to attend mandatory anti-union speeches, the Communications Workers of America alleged in a Wednesday filing with the National Labor Relations Board.The alleged conduct took place at Apple's World Trade Center store in New York City, a CWA representative said.

Apple's New York WTC store has not previously drawn attention for its union activities. It has been reported that employees at Apple's Grand Central store are attempting to unionize.

More details from Engadget stated:

The complaint alleges that Apple interrogated workers at the WTC store regarding their "protected concerted activities." Apple also allegedly monitored those activities or at least made employees believe that they were being monitored. Based on the group's filing, those incidents happened on or about May 3rd.By May 15th, the group said Apple "unlawfully implemented" a rule at the store that prohibits employees from posting union flyers in work areas during their breaks. Further, it's accusing the tech giant of conducting "captive-audience" speeches designed to discourage them from unionizing.

Apple was accused of holding "captive audience" meetings at its Cumberland Mall store in Atlanta earlier this week, the CWA is also representing workers in that case.

In a statement to iMore in response to the filings, Apple stated:

"We are fortunate to have incredible retail team members and we deeply value everything they bring to Apple. We are pleased to offer very strong compensation and benefits for full time and part time employees, including health care, tuition reimbursement, new parental leave, paid family leave, annual stock grants and many other benefits."

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9