Ikea's U.S. factory churns out unhappy workers
Author: Nathaniel Popper, Los Angeles Times [USA], Published on: 10 April 2011
...[Three] years after the massive facility opened here [Danville, Virginia]...Ikea is the target of racial discrimination complaints, a heated union-organizing battle and turnover from disgruntled employees...Some of the Virginia plant's 335 workers are trying to form a union...In response, the factory — part of Ikea's...subsidiary, Swedwood — hired the law firm Jackson Lewis, which has made its reputation keeping unions out of companies. Workers said Swedwood officials required employees to attend meetings at which management discouraged union membership. Plant officials didn't return calls and declined to meet with a Times reporter who visited the Virginia facility. Swedwood spokeswoman Ingrid Steen in Sweden called the situation in Danville "sad" but said she could not discuss the complaints of specific employees. She said she had heard "rumors" about anti-union meetings at the plant but added that "this wouldn't be anything that would be approved by the group management in Sweden."