Moog Music responds to workers unionising: “We will continue to encourage our employee-owners to share their concerns”

“Working together, we are committed to building an even stronger Moog”

Moogfest 2014

Photo: Alicia Funderburk / Getty

Moog Music has responded to staff members unionising through the International Brotherhood Of Electrical Workers (IBEW), stating that the company will not interfere with the Moog Music Union.

The union went public on 1 June 2022, claiming that Moog has failed to provide a “stable livable employment” to its staff. According to a statement issued by the union, Moog’s starting rate for assemblers, packers and warehouse workers is $14.10 per hour, falling short of Asheville’s “living wage” of $17.70 per hour (via Citizen Times).

Moog, which is 49 per cent employee-owned, has sent its response to MusicTech via a representative for the brand, saying that it will commit to “building an even stronger Moog” by ensuring “all employee-owners know their voices are heard”.

The full statement reads:

“Moog Music Inc. is aware of the unionization campaign launched by the IBEW 238 and a group of Moog Music staff members.

“We respect that our employee-owners have the right to join a union, and we will not do anything to interfere with their right to do so.

“We have engaged outside resources to help ensure our company navigates the aforementioned union efforts legally and with proper guidance. While we don’t believe a union is in the best interests of our employee-owners, we will ensure that everyone at the factory has access to accurate information about unions and what a union would mean at Moog so that our employees may make their own informed decisions.

“We will continue to encourage our employee-owners to share their concerns and participate in direct conversations with management to achieve our shared goals. And we will remain committed to providing benefits (medical, dental, vision, 401K with company match, shares in the ESOP, life insurance) and compensation packages that are competitive both regionally and within the industry.

“Working together, we are committed to building an even stronger Moog so that all employee-owners know their voices are heard, their needs are met, and they can take pride in the quality instruments they design, build, package, ship, and service for our customers.”

The union has been formed following a string of layoffs and is campaigning for “protection from being fired at will,” it says. The union claims that alleged layoffs “in the last few months” suggest that the company “disproportionately” discharges employees of “marginalised identities”.

“Prior to the layoffs, the company was approximately 9 per cent people of colour, 6 per cent trans, and 70 per cent cis white men. Of those let go, 29 per cent are people of colour, 21 per cent are trans, and 35 per cent are cis white men,” the union’s statement read, adding that “four of the 14” laid off were “vocal in challenging executives during company meetings.”

Elsewhere, employee-owners are unhappy with their wages in relation to the prices of Moog instruments. Moog line worker Jack Dahnke said in a statement: “Every single instrument I pass through my station sells for more than my monthly take-home wages and I’m expected to go through 11 daily.”

We will continue to follow this story and provide updates.