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Thread: NY Target store workers reject unionization

  1. #1
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    NY Target store workers reject unionization

    I haven't posted anything "political" in a while, but this article disturbs me at a very basic level.

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    NY Target store workers reject unionization
    Workers at NY Target store reject unionization, but union says it will press on nationwide
    Ellen Gibson, AP Retail Writer, On Saturday June 18, 2011, 6:08 am EDT

    NEW YORK (AP) -- Workers at a Target store in New York voted against joining the country's largest retail union Friday night, but the union said it would press on and broaden its push to represent the company's workers nationwide.

    The United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 also said it would contest the results and ask the federal government to order a new election, alleging that Target illegally intimidated workers. Target denied the union's allegations.

    Both sides said the workers at Target's Valley Stream store voted 137-85 against unionization. A "yes" vote would have made the store the first of the company's 1,700 locations to bring in organized labor.

    "Target did everything they could to deny these workers a chance at the American Dream," said Bruce W. Both, president of United and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500, in a statement. "However, the workers' pursuit of a better life and the ability to house and feed their families is proving more powerful. These workers are not backing down from this fight. They are demanding another election."

    Target spokeswoman Molly Snyder said the company acted legally.

    "Target absolutely believes we have followed all the policies and procedures that are outlined by the National Labor Relations Board in a completely lawful manner," Snyder said.

    In response to the vote, the union planned to begin a campaign called "Target: Democracy" at the company's other 26 stores in the New York area and will begin coordinating a nationwide campaign with other union locals in major U.S. cities.

    "Today is merely the end of the first round of what will undoubtedly be a 12-round fight for fairness, democracy, justice and change for all Target workers," Both said.

    Since two-dozen workers from the Valley Stream store approached the union with their grievances regarding hours and pay in February, Target employees from around the country have been reaching out to the labor organization, according to Patrick Purcell, spokesman for the UFCW. The union consists of mostly grocery workers, but also represents employees at retailers that include clothier H&M.

    Read the rest here: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/NY-Tar...19088.html?x=0

    Issue 1: "Local 1500 also said it would contest the results and ask the federal government to order a new election, alleging that Target illegally intimidated workers." A vote of 137 - 85 seems convincing to me. Perhaps the majority of employees really don't want representation? If so, why would you continually try, let alone asking the federal government get involved. It's not like our government has finite resources.

    Issue 2: "Target did everything they could to deny these workers a chance at the American Dream..." Interesting to say the least. How does Bruce know this?

    Issue 3: "In response to the vote, the union planned to begin a campaign called "Target: Democracy" at the company's other 26 stores in the New York area and will begin coordinating a nationwide campaign with other union locals in major U.S. cities." Nice, lose once and make war on an entire organization. That's a value I want my kids to have.

    Issue 4: "Today is merely the end of the first round of what will undoubtedly be a 12-round fight for fairness, democracy, justice and change for all Target workers.." Refer to #1 and #2. It's crazy thinking.

    Issue 5: Seems to be the heart of the matter. "The vote comes at a time when union membership in the retail industry has waned. In 1983, 1.2 million retail workers were union members. Today, that number is 703,000, with more than half of those workers in grocery stores, according to the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union."

    I understand the issue about hours and wage. I received my first raise since 2007 this year, and I pay for the same gas and food as cited in the article, but clearly, these employees voted against it, and by a significant margin. The effort seem "preditory".

    I wonder how many of those 85 who voted for representation actually asked for more hours or expressed a willingness to work in another department or function??

    I don't want to start another pissing contest with my friends; it's just that I simply don't get it.

    Well, I suppose it's ok in that Bruce didn't compare Target to the Third Reich.

  2. #2
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    Don't forget to read the comments.

  3. #3
    Atypical is offline

    Target forces employees to watch this anti-union propaganda video

    By David Edwards

    Gawker obtained a training video that Target uses to warn its employees about the danger of joining a union.

    The 13-milute video titled “Think Hard Before You Sign” is hosted by Doug and Maria, two actors posing as Target employees.

    “We’re a target because we’re a threat to unions,” Doug claims. “The unions that represent grocery store workers.”

    “When we take business away from unionized grocery stores that means they need fewer employees,” Maria continues.

    “And fewer grocery store employees means fewer union members. And fewer members? Well that’s a problem for the union business. That’s right, I said business. Union business,” Doug adds.

    “With a union you no longer have your own voice. Have a great suggestion? You can’t take it directly to your manager. You have to go through the union layers. Need help with a problem? Same thing. Someone else will do the talking for you. And there’s no guarantee you’ll like what they have to say. Guarantees. Guarantees and promises. That’s something else you might hear from a union. Unions often make big promises about wages and benefit increases if the team member will only sign their card. Those are promises they can’t keep,” Maria insists.

    “The risk of getting a union with out a vote, big promises that can’t be kept, pressure on guests not to shop at our stores, for all those reasons and a whole lot more please think hard before you sign any card or petition,” Maria concludes.

    A complete transcript of the video is available here.

    Watch this video from Target via Gawker, uploaded June 13, 2011.

    http://gawker.com/5811371/heres-the-...es-must-endure

    ____________________________________________

    Ah yes. It's so simple. They voted against it so that must be their free will decision. Over and out.

  4. #4
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    I thought the video was a pretty good training / endoctrination video. It's good to inform employees of things that can happen.

    My personal experience with unionization was very negative. The seemed to pray on the least intellegent / most emotional and fill them misinformation. It was quite sad when one individual was emotionally emploring all employees that the company was ripping them off because it had a "large pile of cash". He was mislead to believe that "capital" as it exists on a balance sheet was cash. The union lost twice.

    If you read the comments, it would appear that the "anti union" sentiment is quite high - maybe 90% I'd guess. Given that fact, perhaps it is "free will"? It would appear that most don't want anything to do with a union.

  5. #5
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    This article cites that the orientation piece cited above used union actors -- unconfirmed, but here's the article.

    http://letters.salon.com/politics/wa...n_member/view/

    I wonder if these two ever made another film?

    http://www.allgov.com/Unusual_News/V..._Target_110618

  6. #6
    SiriuslyLong is offline
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    Public Unions Take On Boss to Win Big Pensions

    NY Times is fairly reputable, no?

    I know it's been read: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/22/bu...er=rss&emc=rss

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