After “a year of negotiations with Apple management that yielded unsatisfactory outcomes”, the first unionized Apple Store is looking to strike

Apple Store Towson, Maryland
(Image credit: Apple)

In June 2022, an Apple Store in Towson, Maryland became the first retail location to unionize. Now, after over a year of discussions with the tech giant, the union is set to strike. 

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers’ Coalition of Organized Retail Employees (IAM CORE) has recently “overwhelmingly voted in favor of authorizing a strike” according to a press release put out by the coalition. In this, it says “Following over a year of negotiations with Apple management that yielded unsatisfactory outcomes, IAM CORE members took a significant step by voting in favor of a strike”. 

According to that same press release, IAM CORE “represents approximately 100 employees at Apple’s retail store in Towson”. IAM, the wider union group claims to represent around 600,000 members in North America. 

Why is the Maryland Apple Store going to strike? 

As highlighted in the union’s literature, it claims “Apple is not bargaining in good faith, and we have multiple Unfair Labor Practice charges against Apple for their illegal behavior”. It is trying to argue in favor of changes to wages, overtime pay, time away benefits, and better working conditions. Employees in the union have “concerns over work-life balance, unpredictable scheduling practices” and claim wages fail to “align with the area’s cost of living”. 

Another piece of the union’s literature claims the union is partly responsible for the nationwide wage increase in US Apple Stores, and its “Pulse Survey”, a questionnaire of desires from members, has been used by Apple to structure future decisions. It also claims that changes to job classifications made off the back of its efforts have benefited all members, and that greater union representation “reduces Apple’s ability to act with impunity”. 

No strike date has been set just yet but IAM CORE is set to receive its final offer from Apple and will strike if not given a deal deemed acceptable by its members. 

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James Bentley

James is a staff writer and general Jack of all trades at iMore. With news, features, reviews, and guides under his belt, he has always liked Apple for its unique branding and distinctive style. Originally buying a Macbook for music and video production, he has since gone on to join the Apple ecosystem with as many devices as he can fit on his person. 

With a degree in Law and Media and being a little too young to move onto the next step of his law career, James started writing from his bedroom about games, movies, tech, and anything else he could think of. Within months, this turned into a fully-fledged career as a freelance journalist. Before joining iMore, he was a staff writer at Gfinity and saw himself published at sites like TechRadar, NME, and Eurogamer. 

As his extensive portfolio implies, James was predominantly a games journalist before joining iMore and brings with him a unique perspective on Apple itself. When not working, he is trying to catch up with the movies and albums of the year, as well as finally finishing the Yakuza series. If you like Midwest emo music or pretentious indie games that will make you cry, he’ll talk your ear off.