Apple Appoints “Notorious Union Busting Firm”
Apple has appointed anti-union law firm Littler Mendelson, in the strongest statement yet about its retail store workers’ plans to unionise.
The company has, so far, stayed silent on Apple Store workers organising, but the hiring of Littler, who is currently working with Starbucks to fight similar unionisation, sends a clear message.
Apple Store workers at the Cumberland Mall in Atlanta filed for a union election last week, sparking similar action in other stores. The employees are unionising with the Communications Workers of America.
“By retaining the notorious union busting firm Littler Mendelson, Apple’s management is showing that they intend to try to prevent their employees from exercising their right to join a union by running the same playbook as other large corporations,” said CWA Secretary-Treasurer Sara Steffens.
“The workers at Starbucks, another Littler client, aren’t falling for it and neither will the workers at Apple.”
This comes as FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr slammed Apple’s CEO Tim Cook for the hypocrisy in his recent speech touting his company’s “zero tolerance” for forced labor within its supply chain.
“For years, global corporations like Apple have talked about their values in speeches while cutting deals with brutal regimes for access to lucrative markets,” Carr wrote in an open letter.
“They advance all sorts of arguments to justify their decisions to stand shoulder to shoulder with authoritarians.
“But these profit-driven arguments run headlong into real world experience. China is not opening up or bending towards freedom because Apple is doing business there. Far from it. It’s cracking down on individual liberty at an accelerating clip.”
“Continuing to partner with brutal regimes like Communist China only provides them with tacit—if not explicit—support and emboldens those bad actors.
“It offers them a veneer of openness and legitimacy, while allowing them to surveil individuals and limit their human rights.
“Particularly for a company like Apple that professes to value human rights and “battle” dangerous actors, as Tim Cook stated last week, it is past time for Apple to stand up for those values—not just in words in Washington but through deeds in Beijing.”