Workers at Apple Inc.’s (AAPL) flagship Grand Central Terminal store in Manhattan, New York, have started the process to unionize.
According CNBC, citing a website created by organizers, who have dubbed themselves Fruit Stand Workers United, the workers are in the process of collecting signatures from workers.
“Workers at Apple Stores in the United States are organizing, and you could be part of that effort at Grand Central. Workers have the right under the law to organize to demand better wages, benefits, and working conditions from Apple,” a statement in the website reads.
The retail store employees are seeking representation by Workers United, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union. Workers United is the same group that unionized several Starbucks stores in recent months.
FSWU seeks higher wages and greater bargaining power with Apple over benefits, workplace safety and other employment matters. Their demands include a minimum hourly wage of $30 for all workers, increased tuition reimbursement, more vacation time and research into more robust safety protocols at the Grand Central location.
“Grand Central is an extraordinary store with unique working conditions that make a union necessary to ensure our team has the best possible standards of living in what have proven to be extraordinary times with the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and once-in-a-generation consumer price inflation,” the website add.
The FSWU will first collect signatures from retail employees to form the union. With enough signatures, the group can petition the National Labor Relations Board to hold a formal union election for the Grand Central location.
An Apple spokesperson told CNBC in a statement that the company offers “very strong compensation and benefits” for full-time and part-time employees.
Apple pays its retail workers a starting wage of $20 per hour and provides benefits such as parental leave and stock grants. It expanded sick days and other benefits for U.S. retail workers earlier this year.
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