Some workers at Citizen, a controversial app that allows people to report and even livestream "neighborhood watch" incidents, have filed a petition to hold an official union election with the National Labor Relations Board.
The workers, represented by an attorney for the Communication Workers of America Local District 1 union in New York, filed their petition Sept. 22.
Citizen immediately shared a statement calling the union "meddling" and making clear it does not support the effort. "As a dynamic, high-growth, and innovative company leveraging technology in moments of crisis, we are best positioned to address challenges and grow together as a Citizen team without meddling from an outside union," a company spokesperson wrote in an email to Protocol.
The union effort represents 69 workers at the neighborhood watch app, some of whom began to think seriously about unionizing after an incident in which Citizen CEO Andrew Frame personally pushed for a bounty to find someone allegedly responsible for a setting a wildfire in California, according to a Motherboard report. The app has fallen under scrutiny for allowing users to report incidents they may see as a crime and at times reportedly fomenting racism, hatred and violence within neighborhood communities as as result.
CWA representatives declined to comment.