The union representing engineers at Boeing on Tuesday filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, charging the company with unfair labor practices.

The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace filed the charges after a representative from Boeing Ethics told employees during a new-hire orientation last Friday that they are prohibited from saying bad things about their employment.

Such discussions by union members are protected by the National Labor Relation Act, according to SPEEA. Employers efforts to curb these discussions violate federal law.

This is one instance that was very grotesque and very obvious, in front of 400 witnesses, Ray Goforth, SPEEA executive director, told the Puget Sound Business Journal. It s part of a broader atmosphere of intimidation we ve gotten lots of complaints about.

SPEEA claims on its website that it has received numerous complaints from employees about managers telling them to remove and not display union material at their personal workstation.

SPEEA also says members have reported finding union-related items removed from individual work areas when they arrive at work each day.

The union is currently negotiating new contracts with Boeing for 23,000 engineers and
technical workers, primarily in the Puget Sound region. SPEEA said it presented its full proposal to
Boeing on June 15 but no contract offer has been presented yet by the company. Existing
contracts expire Oct. 6.

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