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Nintendo of America receives another labor complaint

Update: A redacted copy of the complaint shows Nintendo was accused of firing an employee for discussing wages and working conditions.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

August 10, 2022

2 Min Read
Logo for the Nintendo Corporation.

Nintendo of America has received a second complaint in regards to its workplace. Axios reports that the National Labor Relations Board received an anonymous complaint from an employee of the US office of the games publisher. 

In April 2022, an anonymous Nintendo employee filed a complaint with the NLRB against both Nintendo of America and Aston Carter, who handles contract hires, including positions for game testers and customer service. The four allegations included coercive actions and statements, though did not disclose specific events. 

Contract workers lack the benefits of full-time employees, and as a result, can have their contracts cut short or benefits reduced. Even with these reductions, contract workers may still be required to continue heavy work hours at their companies.

This new complaint was filed on August 7, and like the first one, lists Carter and Nintendo of America as joint employers. Further, it continues that NoA formed "coercive rules" against a worker for engaging in "protected activity" with other employees. The activities listed involve "retaliation, discharge, and discipline."

Allegations such as these are typically in relation to the discussion of working conditions or forming a union. Shortly after the first complaint in April, numerous contractors for Nintendo of America were reported as feeling "exploited" by the publisher.

When Game Developer reached out to Nintendo regarding the initial complaint, a spokesperson alleged that the company was unaware of a union, and that the contractor's firing was simply because of disclosing confidential information. 

"Nintendo is not aware of any attempts to unionize or related activity and intends to cooperate with the investigation conducted by the NLRB," it said in April. "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."

At time of writing, Nintendo has not provided a statement regarding the second workplace complaint. 

Update: Kotaku has acquired a copy of the redacted complaint. The complaint alleges that Nintendo of America terminated the contractor for discussing their pay, work hours, and other working conditions with fellow contractors. It can be read in full below: 

"8(a)(1) Within the previous six months, the Employer discharged an employee(s) because the employee(s) engaged in protected concerted activities by, inter alia, protesting terms and conditions of employment and in order to discourage employees from engaging in protected concerted activities.

8(a)(1) Within the previous six-months, the Employer has interfered with, restrained, and coerced its employees in the exercise of rights protected by Section 7 of the Act by maintaining work rules that prohibit employees from discussing wages, hours, or other terms or conditions of employment."

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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