Activision Blizzard employees and the Communications Workers of America (CWA), U.S.’s largest communications and media labor union, filed an unfair labor practice lawsuit against Activision Blizzard. The lawsuit, which is filed in California with the National Labor Relations Board, accuses Activision Blizzard of acting coercively to stop its workers from unionizing.
Specifically, the claimants allege Activision Blizzard engaging in surveilling employees, interrogating them, making threats and promising benefits.
“Management could have responded with humility and a willingness to take necessary steps to address the horrid conditions some workers have faced,” CWA organizing director Tom Smith told The Washington Post. “Instead Activision Blizzard’s response to righteous worker activity was surveillance, intimidation and hiring notorious union busters.”
“The union busters” in question are lawyers of law firm WilmerHale hired by Activision Blizzard in July to conduct an internal investigation. WilmerHale is known for working with Amazon and preventing its employees from unionizing. The company also provides its clients with a defense against whistleblower claims.
Activision Blizzard did not comment on the lawsuit, but it did announce two new hires in its executive team. Julie Hodges, formerly human resources executive at Disney, stepped in as chief people officer, while Sandeep Dube, who previously worked as revenue management executive at Delta Air Lines, was appointed chief commercial officer.