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US Senator Urges Activision CEO Bobby Kotick To Not Undermine Unionization Efforts

Senator Tammy Baldwin reportedly urged the CEO to “negotiate in good faith with the workers and suspend any efforts to undermine your employees’ legal right to form a union and collectively bargain.”


US Senator Tammy Baldwin has reportedly issued a letter to Activision CEO Bobby Kotick urging him to "negotiate in good faith with the workers and suspend any efforts to undermine your employees’ legal right to form a union and collectively bargain" going forward. Baldwin's request follows the conclusion of a National Labor Relations Board hearing between members of the Activision-owned studio Raven Software, and allegations that the company is implementing "union-busting" tactics have surfaced.

Throughout Baldwin's letter--a copy of which was recently obtained by The Washington Post--the senator repeatedly calls for Kotick to not intervene with Raven Software's ongoing attempt at unionization. The senator also warned Kotick she will be "will be following the proceedings at the National Labor Relations Board and Raven Software closely" before suggesting both he and the management at Raven Software should "remain neutral in the coming NLRB election in order to allow your employees to decide their representatives for themselves." Baldwin also sent a copy of the letter to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, one of Microsoft employees overseeing the nearly $70 billion dollar acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

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Raven Software's push for unionization comes after the sudden termination of 12 team members late last year. The incident sparked a month-long strike at the company, with protestors calling upon Activision to offer greater transparency and more ethical working conditions to its workers. Since then, several members of the Raven Software team have formally begun the process of creating a union, writing on social media, "By uniting in solidarity, we can ensure our message is further reaching, and more effective." The group currently has 34 members and, if successful, could become among the first video game industry unions in North America.

Baldwin isn't the only person placing Kotick under heavy scrutiny right now. Earlier this week, it was revealed there are multiple ways the CEO could walk away from Activision Blizzard with a hefty sum of cash if he should leave after Microsoft purchases the company. Both Activision and Kotick himself have been under fire for numerous allegations of misconduct, abuse, harassment, and even death threats.

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