NLRB To Allow Raven Software QA Workers To Hold Union Election
It has been announced that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has given a group of Raven Software's QA workers the go ahead to hold a union election, rejecting Activision Blizzard's argument that the whole of Raven Software should be included in any potential vote. The group itself is made up of 21 quality assurance workers that recently petitioned the NLRB after Activison Blizzard refused to recognize the union.
In an email shared by The Washington Post, Raven Software head Brian Raffel has told staff the studio will host a town hall to discuss "next steps." Activision Blizzard has responded to the NLRB's decision in a statement to The Washington Post, explaining that the publisher will be looking for other legal action and will appeal the decision.
"While we respect the NLRB process, we are disappointed that a decision that could significantly impact the future of our entire studio will be made by fewer than 10 percent of our employees,” explains Activision Blizzard spokesperson Rich George. “We believe a direct relationship with team members is the best path to achieving individual and company goals."
Over the course of the next month, eligible full-time and part-time quality assurance workers working for Activision Blizzard will now receive ballots mailed out by the NLRB. Voters will then need to fill in and return their ballots by May 20, with a ballot count taking place over video conference on May 23. If the NLRB sticks to its decision and there's no further legal action from Activision Blizzard, it's almost a certainty that the group will get their 50 per cent plus 1 majority and force the publisher to the negotiation table.
Having a group of workers unionize at a publisher like Activision Blizzard would certainly set a precedent for the industry, becoming possibly the most high-profile union it has at the moment. There also seems to be no worries about Microsoft's potential takeover of the publisher possibly derailing things as the company has said that it will "respect" and "honor" the outcome of any unionization efforts.
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