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Group looking to form Apple Retail Workers Union

Michael Grothaus
Michael Grothaus|@michaelgrothaus|May 19, 2011 4:00 PM

Today, we received an email from an organization calling itself the Apple Retail Workers Union. The organization is trying to garner enough support among Apple retail employees to unionize. From the email:

On May 19, 2001, Apple opened the doors to its first retail stores. It encouraged people to "shop different."

Ten years later, the people of Apple are coming together to "work different."

We are launching today to get fellow employees, shoppers, and the world know that we work in one of the most demanding retail environments while suffering through unfair treatment and compensation among many other various issues.

We deserve better. Our time has come.

This campaign is by and for the workers of Apple's retail stores in the United States.

A spokesperson for the ARWU told Macworld that employees from "some stores in the Pacific Northwest may be talking amongst themselves" about forming a union, and that "an attempt at [the] Alderwood store... is the closest anyone has come to collective action" at Apple's retail stores. The spokesman, who wished to remain anonymous, works at an Apple store "in the Bay area" and said the "unfair treatment" it cited in its email "included break schedules, training opportunities, the selection and hiring process for internal candidates for open positions, and wages," according to Macworld.

With all the demonizing of unions going on right now, it's probably not the best time for the fledgling ARWU to attempt this, but hey, at least they're giving it a go in the Pacific Northwest first and not in more hostile places, such as Wisconsin.