May 24, 2024

Image for article titled Apple could face its first strike from retail employees

Photo: Toru Hanai (Reuters)

Tech giant Apple is poised to see its first-ever strike on its retail operations after staff at a store in Maryland voted to authorize a strike against the company.

Members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers overwhelmingly voted on Saturday to strike at the Apple Store in Towson.

“Following over a year of negotiations with Apple management that yielded unsatisfactory outcomes,” the “members took a significant step by voting in favor of a strike at the Apple Towson store, signaling their collective demand for meaningful change,” the coalition said in a statement. “The issues at the forefront of this action include concerns over work-life balance, unpredictable scheduling practices disrupting personal lives, and wages failing to align with the area’s cost of living.”

No date has been set for the strike.

The Apple store in Maryland was the first to unionize for the company in 2022. Back then, the issues driving Apple retail workers to organize went beyond pay and benefits: Workers were also looking for more of a voice in company operations.

In a 2022 open letter to Apple chief Tim Cook, Maryland’s Apple store employees said their collective action was sparked by their love of their jobs, “not to go against or create conflict with our management.” Their goal, they said, “was about gaining access to rights we currently do not have,” and they asked Cook to “think different” and collaborate with employees rather than fend off the campaign.

Lila MacLellan contributed to this article.

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