Consumer Reports disregard for its Guild employees has to stop
By ANNA PIERDILUCA
One of the enduring and collegial traditions here at CR is a private, informal meeting between the Guild unit chair and Consumer Reports’ board chairman during the annual spring Board of Director's meeting.
The visit by Walter Bristol, chairman of the Board of Directors, took place during the week of April 31; however, the private, informal meeting, which was always scheduled by the executive office here at CR, did not. It was cancelled due to "scheduling” problems.
In addition, as of this date, I still have not been formally introduced to the new COO, Laurence Bunin.
Over the 75+ years of Consumer Union’s existence, there have been contentious times and disagreements between the Guild and management. However, there always seemed to be a measure of respect between the parties that rose above it all. Apparently that is no longer the case.
Please understand this is not personal. I consider it a slap-in-the-face to the Guild and all of our members, especially at this extremely sensitive and pivotal time in our history. It is an egregious example of the level of disregard in which we are now held by management.
During a recent discussion with a high-level CR executive, I painstakingly relayed the staff's concerns and fears regarding the organization's future. The response was, "They need to get over it."
The symbolism expressed in the aforementioned examples is alarming. While we recognize that the organization needs to change, the cavalier and dismissive attitude expressed by management is appalling.
The organization has become the antithesis of what we once were and what we publicly espouse. We encourage governments and employers to treat people with respect, yet we disrespect and diminish the role of the Guild and its members. It's "do as I say, not as I do." The public face misrepresents the private reality.
We urge management to cease its "let-them-eat-cake" mentality. If CR is to survive for another 75 years, it will only do so if management embraces Guild members and recognizes and respects staffers' contribution to the overall success of the organization.