Undercover Footage Shows Airline Managers Trying to Bust a Union
A rare glimpse at a widespread crime.
We published a video report today that takes you inside what American workers often face when they announce their intent to unionize.
Last fall, 320 ramp workers at Sun Country Airlines filed for a union election at the carrier’s headquarters in Minneapolis. (Sun Country is a growing ultra-low-fare airline whose owners are private equity giant Apollo Management and Amazon, which bought a minority stake in 2019.)
The company launched what’s become the textbook modern anti-union campaign—except in this rare case, some of it was caught on camera. As you’ll see in the video, during a mandatory meeting for every worker on shift, a manager sounds off against unions and warns the workers: “Think you can’t fire a union employee? You can. I fired many.”
That kind of pressure is often enough to sink a union drive. But the Sun Country ramp workers held strong, and voted to organize with the Teamsters in January.
The story doesn’t end there though. Within days of workers winning their election, the airline retaliated, abruptly firing three of the people who’d led the organizing drive (you’ll meet them each in the video). Union-busting charges have now been filed with the National Labor Relations Board.
Watch the full piece:
Incidentally, this is a rare video that we published but didn’t produce. It was made by filmmaker Jimmy Day, who’s creating a full-length documentary about union-busting, Busted. If you’re organizing or have experienced union-busting in your workplace, he’d really like to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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