Nintendo and Aston Carter are accused of taking coercive measures against employees who speak out in favor of unionization.
Nintendo is one of the biggest franchises in the world. From Japan, he has dedicated himself for decades to the research, development of video game software and hardware. It also has some of the most influential consoles in the video game industry and equally well-known and important titles internationally.
Of course, being one of the companies with the highest market value and wealth, in the past it was attributed one of the most reputable “social responsibility” policies. However, for now things do not seem to be going so well for the company in that regard.
One more complaint for Nintendo
After having received a series of awards and recognitions both for its achievements and for its good practices, recently a labor complaint has been filed with the National Labor Relations Board against Nintendo and the Aston Carter recruitment agency.
Unfortunately, it is not the first complaint that has been made, since this year someone else had accused Mario’s editor of interfering in the “concerted activities” of the workers, including some possible reprisals. But this was a known complaint after dozens of former and current employees accused Nintendo of America of keeping them in job scouting conditions.
Axios reported that the complaint was filed on August 7 against Nintendo and Aston Carter as joint employers.. The main points of this complaint include “concerted activities (retaliation, dismissal, discipline)” and “coercive regulations”. Although not exact, they fall under Section 7 and Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act. In this sense, the first part guarantees the right of workers to form a union or self-organize for “mutual aid and protection.” And in the second part, companies are prohibited from “interfering, restricting or coercing employees” to exercise their rights.
In other words, The company is accused of firing an employee for talking about working conditions and prohibiting employees from discussing wages, hours and “other terms or conditions of employment.”
Here is the full text of the complaint:
8(a)(1) Within the preceding six months, the employer terminated one or more employees because the employee(s) engaged in protected concerted activity, including protesting the terms and conditions of employment and for the purpose of dissuading employees from to engage in protected concerted activities.
8(a)(1) Within the preceding six months, the Employer has interfered with, restrained and coerced its employees in the exercise of rights protected by Section 7 of the Act by maintaining work rules that prohibit employees from discussing wages, hours, or other terms or conditions of employment.
There were already other complaints for Nintendo and Aston Carter
As you read earlier, employers were accusers of labor violations in April. Said public complaint appealed to coercion, surveillance and, again, retaliation. Four related persons explained to Kotaku that this incident stemmed from an employee asking about unions during a meeting, but that he was later fired on the grounds that he had violated his NDA.
At the time, Nintendo explained in a statement that there had never been “attempted unionization or related activity,” and that the reason he was fired was for disclosing confidential information, among other things.
But, after this, there were several testimonials circulating on social networks that claimed to be former employees of Nintendo of America. These confirmed the company’s troubled environment and other unfavorable conditions. In fact, dozens of them explained to Kotaku that Nintendo of America treated its workers unfairly, had low wages, months off and poor health care, and that customer service representatives were prohibited from participating in the company’s most important corporate events and even walking through some corridors of the main headquarters.
Until now, Nintendo and Astor Carter have not shared reports on the latest accusation. Just in April, the president of Nintendo of America, Doug Bowser, published an internal message to inform employees that they were already taking care of the matter and would not allow this to continue, under a policy of zero tolerance towards discrimination, bullying and bullying. But two current employees said that little or nothing has changed since then.
We will have to wait for the next step for the multiple accusations against Nintendo, many of which date back several years. For his part, Reggie Fils-Aime, the former president of Nintendo, argued in an interview in May that in 2019 the company was not in those conditions. But one fact is that companies should allow their employees to form their own unions that support their rights.