Janneke Parrish, a leader of the #AppleToo movement, has filed an unfair labor practice charge against the company, alleging the tech giant fired her in retaliation for organizing.
Parrish worked on the #AppleToo platform in order to help colleagues air their concerns with Apple’s culture of “pervasive sexism” and pay equity, according to the complaint. Then, in October, she was fired, allegedly for failing to comply with a workplace investigation into leaks.
Parrish says the company terminated her based on “false and pretextual reasons” — namely because she “spoke up regarding her personal experiences regarding workplace concerns and helped give voice to her co-workers’ concerns in a workplace where such issues have been systematically siloed, suppressed, and unaddressed.”
“It seems like all the tech companies are using the same playbook,” says labor attorney Laurie Burgess. “They get rid of outspoken organizers by asserting they are responsible for a leak without any proof or documentation that that person was indeed responsible. My client denies having leaked this information.” Burgess is also representing the fired and suspended Netflix organizers, as well as prominent Google organizers.
This is the seventh unfair labor practice charge that has been filed against Apple since August. Last month, former senior engineering program manager Ashley Gjøvik accused Tim Cook of violating the National Labor Relations Act when he warned employees that “people who leak confidential information do not belong here.”
Cher Scarlett, an Apple software engineer who created #AppleToo, filed a complaint in September alleging the company stopped employees from engaging in protected activity when they tried to discuss their pay.
An employee on the AppleCare team, Apple’s version of customer service, filed a charge on September 28th alleging they were unlawfully fired. This charge has not been previously reported. The employee’s identity is not known at this time.
The NLRB is currently investigating claims against the tech giant. If it finds they have merit, it can try to secure a settlement. The labor board can also issue its own complaint if settlement talks fail.
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Verge.