« Why Labor Rights Protect National Security | Main | Immigration Reform: Sell Green Cards »

February 26, 2005

Addendum on How Companies Fight Union Votes

Following up on the post about the vote at the Denver Wal-Mart, this story has a quote by a Wal-Mart worker who hates her treatment by the company but still voted against the union:

Alicia Sylvia, a single mother of 10-year-old twins, was a big union booster at the outset.

"Compared to other stores, we don't even make what cashiers make," said Ms. Sylvia, who earns just under $9 an hour writing up service orders as cars arrive at the garage and says she cannot afford Wal-Mart's health insurance.

She acknowledged that the antiunion videos had helped turn her against unionizing.

"I really wish Wal-Mart would become better," she said. "But even if we get a union, it will be a long battle. Wal-Mart doesn't have to agree to anything. The message we got was, 'You're a small bunch of guys, and you can stand out there and strike, and we're going to replace you.' They'll never agree to a contract, out of pure stubbornness. I'm so confused."

That pretty much highlights the effectiveness of anti-union campaigns leading up to an NLRB election. Essentially, Wal-Mart says that since they'll continue to violate labor law after the vote and fire people who try to strike, resistance is futile. Wal-Mart uses its own reputation for intimidation and retaliation as an electioneering tool.

Posted by Nathan at February 26, 2005 10:25 AM