On Saturday, Apple workers at a retail store in Towson Maryland cast their vote and a historic result that pointed towards unionization with an overwhelming margin was reached . Although the results have not been officially declared as yet, the vote was reportedly 65-33 in favor of joining a union. There were roughly 110 employees who could vote in the retail store, located in the suburbs. The National Labor Relations Board has to certify the votes.
A group of employees who call themselves AppleCORE (Coalition of Organized Retail Employees) said that the union drive was undertaken as they wished to expand their rights. They said that they wanted a say in matters related to pay and hours as well as safety. This group is associated with an established union called the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
The Towson organizers had written a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook mentioning that “the decision to form a union” was about the workers “gaining access to rights” that they did not “currently have.”
The Towson Store became the first Apple Store to unionize as an earlier attempt by organizers in Atlanta withdrew their petition to unionize. That vote was to take place in early June but was withdrawn as store workers reportedly said that “intimidation” by some management officials made “a free and fair election impossible,” according to reports.
Although the Towson store is not considered to be what is called a “flagship store” the organizers were thrilled with the result and tweeted, “We did it Towson! We won our union vote! Thanks to all who worked so hard and all who supported!”
In. 2021, Apple reported more than $365 billion in sales. The tech giant says that its employees make $22 per hour or more.
Several large companies such as Amazon, Starbucks, Google and others have seen an accelerated union drive in the past year and tech giant Apple’s retail employees have now joined the union drive. There have been reports of management trying to bust union operations with mixed results, in all these companies.