Home News An Apple Store In Maryland Makes History By Forming The Company’s First Recognized Union

An Apple Store In Maryland Makes History By Forming The Company’s First Recognized Union

An Apple Store In Maryland Makes History By Forming The Company’s First Recognized Union

As several Apple stores across the country fought to unionize, workers in Towson, Maryland became the first to win formal recognition. Out of 110 eligible employees, the union received 65 yes votes and 33 no votes.

This historic victory comes after concentrated efforts from Apple to discourage its retail workers from unionizing. Last month, the trillion-dollar company’s vice president of people and retail Deirdre O’Brien sent a video to 58,000 retail staff warning them about the perceived drawbacks of unionizing. O’Brien reiterated anti-union talking points, stating that it would be more difficult to enact change in stores with a union standing between Apple and employees — but workers don’t think that meaningful change is possible without having a formally recognized bargaining unit.

A store in Atlanta was supposed to be the first to hold a union election, but the organizers withdrew their request, claiming that Apple was leveraging illegal union-busting tactics, such as holding “captive audience” meetings. At the time that they filed for an election, the Cumberland Mall store in Atlanta had 70% out of about 100 employees sign union authorization cards, demonstrating their interest in moving forward. Since then, Apple has raised retail pay to a minimum of $22 per hour, up from $20.

Now, the store in Maryland will become unionized through the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) and is calling itself the Coalition of Organized Retail Employees (CORE). When they first announced their intent to unionize, they wrote a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

“We have come together as a union because of a deep love of our role as workers within the company and out of care for the company itself,” the letter said. “To be clear, the decision to form a union is about us as workers gaining access to rights that we do not currently have.”

As the first Apple store to unionize in the country, these Towson workers may spark a movement for other retail locations to follow their lead. According to the New York Times, over two dozen Apple stores have expressed interest in organizing, including the Grand Central Terminal store in New York City.

To suppress the growing push for retail unions, Apple is working with Littler Mendelson, the same law firm supporting Starbucks’ anti-union push. But Starbucks workers have managed to win a wave of union elections regardless. In December, a Starbucks store in Buffalo, New York became the first of the company’s coffee shops to unionize. Now, about seven months later, 158 stores in 30 states have unionized.

TechCrunch reached out to an Apple spokesperson for comment but did not hear back before publication.

Eskalera, a Startup Led by Goldman Sachs’ Former HR Head Has Launched a Diversity and Inclusion Index

Eskalera, a technology startup led by Goldman Sachs former human resources head Dane Holmes, has launched an index to measure corporate diversity and inclusiveness,...

HSBC to Remove 35,000 Jobs Amidst Covid-19 Crises

HSBC Holdings Plc has restarted cutting as many as 35,000 jobs, three months after the coronavirus outbreak forced it to pause a long-awaited overhaul...

Genpact Offers Its Internal Skill Training Program Globally for Everyone

Genpact has announced Adapt and Rise, a role-based online learning platform that leverages Genpact's expertise honed from delivering real-world change for hundreds of clients....

San-Francisco Based Learning Platform Degreed Has Raised $32 Million in New Funding

The upskilling platform, Degreed, has announced $32 million in new funding in direct response to overwhelming demand for better skill insights, talent mobility, and...

Research Shows the Implications of Workplace Layouts on Employee Productivity and Overall Performance

As some workplaces prepare for the gradual return of employees and overhaul office layouts and seating plans, research has shown this could also have...

Employee Concierge ‘Back Technologies’ Integrates Automation Into Internal HR and Other Support Tasks

Companies are under increasing pressure to automate workflows and digitally service their employees, particularly in light of trends toward remote work. It takes an...

HR Strategies to Help Your Business Navigate the New ‘Normal’

No business is immune to the massive changes resulting from the health crisis. Organizations have proven themselves to be agile, and employees have demonstrated...

The Importance Of Diversity And Inclusion In HR, Hiring, Talent Management: Thoughts From A Top Expert

Michael C. Hyter is one of today’s best-known experts on inclusion and diversity and the author of The Power of Choice: Embracing Efficacy to Drive Your Career and The...

HR Expert Highlights Actionable Steps to ‘Make Real Change’ Against Racism in Your Workplace

Kyra Leigh Sutton, Ph.D., is a faculty member at the Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations, where she teaches human resources courses...

Adidas Employees Want Company to Investigate HR Chief for Response to Racial Issues

A group of Adidas employees from around the globe is asking the company to investigate its chief human resources officer, as part of a...