This is really outrageous.

The practice of hiring business-oriented public affairs firms can lead to situations in which labor helps to finance ugly tactics used against fellow workers. Last month, Mercury Public Affairs, a lobbying firm working on behalf of Wal-Mart, snuck one of its associates into an event hosted by Warehouse Workers United. The warehouse workers are currently engaged in a bitter dispute over a number of abuses, including claims that sub-contractors for Wal-Mart have cut corners over safety and failed to provide proper wage information. The associate, who posed as a “student reporter” from the University of Southern California, was discovered and later forced to resign from her job.

Lost in the story, which received headlines from the Los Angeles Times to Gawker, was the fact that Mercury simultaneously works for several labor unions, including Teamsters Joint Council 16 of New York, which paid them $52,000 in 2011 and the SEIU Leadership Council in California, which paid them $110,000 in 2011, according to Department of Labor Records. Both SEIU and Teamsters are members of the Change to Win coaltion, which is attempting to prevent Wal-Mart from entering Los Angeles.
Unions Contract Out to PR Firms That Work for Anti-Worker Groups - Working In These Times