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Ikea Workers Seek to Become the First to Unionize at One of the Company's U.S. Stores

Photo courtesy UNI Global Union

Yesterday, workers at the Stoughton Ikea store, in the Boston area, went on strike after the company refused to recognize their attempts to join the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) and enter into contract negotiations. Last week, 75% of the workers in the bargaining unit signed a petition affirming their desire to join the union. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rules allow the company to voluntarily recognized the union if a majority express support, but Ikea has refused to do so to date, prompting the strike.

“Instead of doing what is right, Ikea has chosen to fight its own hardworking employees. That is wrong. All we want is the chance to earn a better life,” said Chris DeAngelo, who has worked at Ikea for eight years. “We are dedicated to our jobs and wish Ikea would honor its own policy and respect our union rights.”

The employees work in the goods flow department at the Stoughton store, which was the subject of a recent complaint filed with the NLRB alleging that it violated federal labor law. The company settled the complaint with the NLRB.

DeAngelo continued:

I love working at Ikea, and I want to make a career here. A union is the best way to work together to live our values and build an even better Ikea. We’ve gone through a lot at our store, but this is a chance to turn over a new leaf and reset the relationship between Ikea’s hardworking men and women and management. If Ikea does what is right and chooses to recognize our union today, it will show that Ikea respects our right to join a union without fear of retaliation or harassment.

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