IAM Charges Raytheon with Spying

The IAM is charging Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, AZ, with spying on union officials and illegally threatening employees during recent contract negotiations.

The Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) charges filed with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) claim Raytheon used minivans and security personnel to monitor employees engaged in lawful union activities and positioned security agents directly beneath a conference room for the purpose of spying on the union’s negotiating committee. A second ULP charge claims Raytheon threatened probationary employees with discharge if they honored the union’s picket lines.

The use of surveillance to monitor union activities or to intimidate employees from engaging in union activities is a violation of the National Labor Relations Act. The U.S Supreme Court has ruled that an employer violates federal law even by creating the appearance of surveillance of union activities. In addition, probationary employees are entitled to the same protection under the NLRA as permanent employees.

Members of Local 933, who make the Javelin antitank missile and the Tomahawk missile, voted to authorize a strike at Raytheon Missile Systems after rejecting a contract offer that increased health care costs and attacked the employees’ pension plan.