Nintendo faces complaint with National Labor Relations Board (Update)

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The complaint alleges interference at Nintendo and a hiring firm

A worker has filed a complaint against Nintendo and a global hiring firm over alleged labor violations. The complaint, filed last Friday, alleges both engaged in “concerted activities” and took “coercive actions” against a worker.

As first spotted by Axios, the exact particulars of the claim are not available on the docket. The complaint is filed in Washington, based out of the same state as Nintendo of America. Listed alongside Nintendo is hiring company Aston Carter. Axios’ Stephen Totilo also notes that the worker has not been identified as the impacted worker, or a concerned party.

The allegations claim Nintendo of America and Aston Carter violated their rights to organize. The complaint lists some broad charges, though no specifics of what’s occurred. They are as follows:

  • Coercive statements (Threat, Promises of Benefits, etc.)
  • Concerted Activities (Retaliation, Discharge, Discipline)
  • Discharge (Including Layoff and Refusal to hire (not salting))
  • Coercive Actions (Surveillance, etc.)

We’ve reached out to Nintendo for comment.

[Update: Nintendo responded to Destructoid’s request with the following statement: “We are aware of the claim, which was filed with the National Labor Relations Board by a contractor who was previously terminated for the disclosure of confidential information and for no other reason. Nintendo is not aware of any attempts to unionize or related activity and intends to cooperate with the investigation conducted by the NLRB. Nintendo is fully committed to providing a welcoming and supportive work environment for all our employees and contractors. We take matters of employment very seriously.”]

Organizing efforts in the industry

Labor relations have been increasingly front-of-mind in the industry. Issues at companies like Activision Blizzard and Ubisoft have pushed workers to form alliances and organize. Walkouts and protests have so far pushed management to respond and address key issues at these studios.

Organization efforts have increased, too. Raven Software QA workers formed a union and have called for recognition from Activision Blizzard. The publishing giant is in the midst of being bought by Microsoft. The company did recently announce a pay bump and full-time for all QA workers. A spokesperson told Bloomberg that Raven workers will not receive the new pay initiatives due to legal obligations under the National Labor Relations Act, however.

We’ll see how this labor complaint pans out as more information emerges.

We’ve clarified this article to note the worker has not yet been identified as a Nintendo employee.

Eric Van Allen
Senior News Reporter