Apple Store Maryland

Apple Store in Maryland Becomes First U.S. Store to Unionize

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is yet to certify the results of the vote

Workers at Apple’s Townson Mall retail store near Baltimore, Maryland, on Saturday voted in favour of joining a union, becoming the first U.S. locations to unionize.

Union voting at the Townson Mall store began Wednesday and ran through Saturday evening. Of some 110 eligible employees, 65 voted in favour of joining the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, and 33 against.

“We did it Towson! We won our union vote! Thanks to all who worked so hard and all who supported!” tweeted organizers.

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is yet to certify the results of the vote, which could take about a week. Once the vote has been ratified, however, Apple will be forced to collectively bargain with employees at the Townson Mall store.

The store’s workers said they are unionizing for a say in their pay, hours, and working conditions.

“To be clear, the decision to form a union is about us as workers gaining access to rights that we do not currently have,” the store’s organizers wrote in a letter addressed to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

The Maryland location is far from a key stronghold for Apple. However, the store’s successful campaign is still a loss for the tech giant as it may open the flood gates by renewing a desire for unionization at other stores across the country.

That is especially true considering the first Apple store employees in the U.S. to file for a union election, those at the Georgia location, withdrew their application last month after alleging Apple “intimidated” them.

The Maryland win could help existing unionization drives in New York, Kentucky, and Nashville regain some lost momentum and encourage more stores to organize their own.

Yet, none of the strategies were able to prevent Maryland from unionizing.

Apple’s brush with unionization efforts isn’t limited to the U.S. either. Last week, an Apple retail store in Glasgow became the first of the company’s stores in the U.K. to unionize.