Airline staff told dont unionise, buy video games – BBC News

Airline staff told \don\t unionise, buy video games\ - BBC News
Delta Air Lines compares union dues to video games in offensive poster
The poster, which was tweeted earlier Thursday by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, or IAM, is part of Deltas “Dont Risk It, Dont Sign It” campaign to persuade thousands of flight attendants and ramp and cargo agents not to sign a card authorizing an election to join the IAM.

A spokeswoman for Delta confirmed that the poster — which includes a generic depiction of a video game controller and suggests that employees “put your money towards that instead of paying dues to the union” — is real.

The firm, FTI Consulting, has produced astroturf campaigns for some of the worlds biggest polluters including Exxon, BP, and Halliburton.

Deltas Anti-Union Propaganda Came From PR Shop Busted for Posing as Journalists for ExxonMobil

Insulting. Without an IAM contract, many @Delta workers have to work 2-3 jobs just to survive. They have no time to play games. #DoBetterDelta pic.twitter.com/UVM0PR2fKC

“It is no coincidence that Delta re-launched a campaign against their own employees less than 24 hours after the IAM initiated the international component of our campaign. [Wednesday], with the assistance of the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and Amsterdam-based union FNV Cabine, Delta flight attendants were met in Amsterdam where they were able to sign cards supporting an IAM election outside of Delta’s intimidating view.

In a statement, Delta said it was seeking to preserve “the direct relationship we have with our employees” and asserting that Deltas employees “have the best total compensation in the industry, including the most lucrative profit sharing program in the world.”

“Our employees have the best total compensation in the industry, including the most lucrative profit sharing program in the world. They want and deserve the facts and we respect our employees’ right to decide if a union is right for them. Delta has shared many communications, which on the whole make clear that deciding whether or not to unionize should not be taken lightly.”

The union said in a statement Thursday that Delta had “resorted to defaming and spewing lies and misrepresentations about the IAM.”

"Delta Air Lines’ all-out assault on their employees’ legally-protected right to unionize with the Machinists Union is confirmation that our campaign to bring the benefits of IAM-representation to more than 40,000 Delta ground workers and flight attendants is succeeding," the statement reads.

Several members of Congress joined thousands of other people on social media in denouncing the poster.

Delta says, “Our employees have the best total compensation in the industry … They want and deserve the facts and we respect our employees’ right to decide if a union is right for them.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, a Democratic presidential candidate, called the poster “a disgrace,” alleging on Twitter that “Deltas CEO made nearly $22 million in 2017 while paying ramp agents as little as $9/hour.”

That union is a member of the AFL-CIO, which tweeted and deleted a meme Thursday night showing a guillotine and referencing Delta’s CEO. A union representative said they realized it was in poor taste.

Records filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission report that Chief Executive Ed Bastian received a little more than $13.2 million in total compensation in 2017, including stock and incentives.

The latest round started with flyers showing images of a football, baseball or video game controller, with messages like “what you could do with $700 you don’t spend on union dues.”

“A gaming system cant give you: fair wages, health care benefits, job security, retirement benefits,” he said on Twitter.

“Delta Airlines all-out assault on their employees legally-protected right to unionise with the Machinists Union is confirmation that our campaign to bring the benefits of IAM-representation is succeeding,” it said in a statement.

The poster doesnt appear to have been intended for the public — its not included among eight pages of “printable messages” on Deltas Dont Risk It, Dont Sign It website, which domain registration records indicate was created in February 2018. Those messages, while being equally as aggressive as the video game poster, more directly address specifics of Deltas opposition to union representation.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), which claims to represent more than 110,000 airline employees in the United States, is attempting to organise union representation for 44,000 Delta employees.

Among the allegations in those messages is that the IAM makes unannounced visits to workers homes, opposes profit sharing and disregards workers privacy.

Without confirming it produced the posters, a spokesperson for the airline said it had “shared many communications, which on the whole make clear that deciding whether or not to unionise should not be taken lightly.”

Georgia is a so-called right-to-work state, where its illegal to require workers to become union members as a condition of employment. Delta, which is based in Atlanta, said in its statement Thursday that it supported “our employees right to decide if a union is right for them.”

Share CALE GUTHRIE WEISSMAN May 9th 2019 12:23PM For the past few years, Delta Air Lines employees have been trying to form a union. While the airlines pilots and dispatchers are represented by their own union, other employees do not have such representation. According to one unionization campaign for Deltas ramp workers, the airline puts a cap on the number of hours part-time employees can work, as well as provides expensive and inadequate health insurance. Delta has gone to great lengths to hinder the unionization effort.

The unionization campaign has been ongoing for a while–and the airline has responded in some bizarre ways. Last year, Splinter wrote about Delta’s questionable anti-union propaganda. That includes a website called “Don’t Risk It. Don’t Sign It.”–the “it” being a union card–and posters claiming that the unions are run by rich fat cats raking in dough from poor unionized employees.

The unionization campaign has been ongoing for a while–and the airline has responded in some bizarre ways. Last year, Splinter wrote about Deltas questionable anti-union propaganda. That includes a website called Dont Risk It. Dont Sign It.–the it being a union card–and posters claiming that the unions are run by rich fat cats raking in dough from poor unionized employees.

The message is clear: Why join a union when you can just buy a video game console instead? While the people who helped craft that message may have thought they made something pithy and memorable, the result wasn’t quite that. Instead, Delta comes off more like a rich grandfather explaining to his grandchildren that they should be happy with the Applebee’s gift card he set aside for them in his will.

In a statement, IAM also said Delta was "defaming and spewing lies and misrepresentations" about the union, per NBC News. The Post notes Delta has long been anti-union, and that, via its "Don't Risk It, Don't Sign It" portal, it's trying to keep IAM workers from putting their signatures on union cards; after 50% of the workforce has handed in these signed cards, a vote on the union would be triggered. Some big names also took notice of Delta's attempt. "What a disgrace," tweeted Bernie Sanders, while Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown was more blunt: "Shame on @Delta for this condescending bulls—," he posted. A Delta spokeswoman confirmed that the video game poster was real, adding in a statement that "our employees have the best total compensation in the industry, including the most lucrative profit sharing program in the world." (Read more Delta Air Lines stories.)  

Delta to workers: Spend money on video games, not dues; union supporters outraged

In its last earnings report, Delta exceeded revenue expectations–hitting $10.47 billion; its profits jumped 31% to $730 million. While business is booming, the airline is taking great pains to ensure that those making an average of $14.31/hour don’t seek out worker protections or the ability to get better and comprehensive compensation. Meanwhile, Delta’s CEO, Ed Bastian, received total compensation of over $13 million in 2017.

(Newser) – Delta Air Lines really doesn't want its flight attendants or ramp and cargo attendants to unionize. That seems to be the reason, at any rate, behind a Delta poster that's causing a ruckus. The poster, tweeted out Thursday by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, shows clip art of a video game controller, noting, "Union dues cost around $700 per year." That's followed by a recommendation that workers put that $700 toward a video game system. The Washington Post notes a second poster is also taking heat, one that suggests workers should take the $700 and spend some nights out "watching football with your buddies" and buying "a few rounds." IAM called the first poster "insulting" in a tweet, adding that "without an IAM contract, many @Delta workers have to work 2-3 jobs just to survive. They have no time to play games."

Delta under fire for flyer in campaign against union

With this latest tone-deaf poster, Delta seems to be telling employees that they should use their hard-earned money to buy mindless entertainment that will help them forget they are being under-compensated and undervalued. For now, let’s hope Delta employees are able to get both a union and a new gaming system.

The direct relationship we have with our employees is at the very core of our strong culture and it has enabled continuous investments in Delta people. Our employees have the best total compensation in the industry, including the most lucrative profit sharing program in the world. They want and deserve the facts and we respect our employees’ right to decide if a union is right for them. Delta has shared many communications, which on the whole make clear that deciding whether or not to unionize should not be taken lightly.