Activision Blizzard decline to recognise Raven QA union


Activision Blizzard have declined to voluntarily recognise the union forming at Raven Software program’s QA division, forcing employees to take the lengthy method. The group calling themselves the Recreation Staff Alliance will now must hit up the Nationwide Labor Relations Board and run elections, however say they’re nonetheless assured about unionising as a result of, y’know, they’ve the help of a supermajority. “As soon as once more, when administration is given a alternative, they all the time appear to take the low highway,” the group stated.

Raven QA began organising following layoffs in December, plus the entire companywide sexual harrassment and discrimination mega-scandal. A number of dozen employees went on strike for seven weeks, solely winding down after a gaggle of QA introduced plans to type the Recreation Staff Alliance. They’re forming underneath the Communication Staff Of America (CWA).

If Activision Blizzard had voluntarily recognised the union, that’d be it, union away! Appeared unlikely they might, given their historical past of discouraging unionisation. Seeing as they’ve chosen to not, the Recreation Staff Alliance as an alternative have to go the longer route by way of the Nationwide Labor Relations Board. They’re going to want a majority to say “hey, NLRB, let’s unionise” then maintain elections. If that goes properly then hooray, the union will likely be licensed.

The Recreation Staff Alliance responded in a Twitter thread final evening:

“We, the supermajority of employees at Raven QA, are proud to be confidently submitting our petition with the NLRB for our union election.

“We’re deeply dissatisfied that Raven Software program and Activision Blizzard refused to uplift employees rights by selecting to not voluntarily acknowledge our union regardless of our supermajority help. This was a possibility for Activision Blizzard to indicate an actual dedication setting new and improved requirements for employees. As a substitute, Activision Blizzard has chosen to make a rushed restructuring announcement to attempt to hinder our proper to arrange…

“As soon as once more, when administration is given a alternative, they all the time appear to take the low highway.

“Nonetheless, we’re proud to file with the NLRB as we get pleasure from supermajority help for our union and know that collectively, we’ll acquire the formal authorized recognition we have now earned.”

One potential downside is that Activision Blizzard have chosen now to begin rearranging QA. Polygon report that Activision introduced on Monday that they have been switching from a standalone QA division to extra of an embedded QA mannequin, with testers being positioned in particular departments and changing into nearer to growth groups. It is a legit studio construction which many assume has actual advantages , however the timing makes some folks suspicious.

A number of labour specialists instructed the Washington Publish that Activision Blizzard might be making an attempt to weaken help for the union. The CWA instructed the WP that conferences in regards to the adjustments the place “nothing greater than a tactic to thwart Raven QA employees who’re exercising their proper to organise.”

Activision Blizzard issued a press release about their alternative to not recognise the fledgling union:

“At Activision Blizzard, we deeply respect the rights of all workers to make their very own choices about whether or not or to not be a part of a union. We rigorously reviewed and regarded the CWA preliminary request final week and tried to discover a mutually acceptable answer with the CWA that might have led to an expedited election course of. Sadly, the events couldn’t attain an settlement.

“We anticipate that the union will likely be transferring ahead with the submitting of a petition to the NLRB for an election. If filed, the corporate will reply formally to that petition promptly. A very powerful factor to the corporate is that every eligible worker has the chance to have their voice heard and their particular person vote counted, and we predict all workers at Raven ought to have a say on this determination.

“Throughout the corporate, we consider {that a} direct relationship between managers and group members permits us to rapidly reply and ship the strongest outcomes and alternatives for workers. Because of these direct relationships, we’ve made plenty of adjustments over the previous couple years together with elevating minimal compensation for Raven QA workers by 41%, extending paid time without work, increasing entry to medical advantages for workers and their vital others, and transitioning greater than 60% of non permanent Raven QA employees into full-time workers. We sit up for persevering with a direct dialogue with our group and dealing collectively to make our office higher.”

How good that they are so involved about folks’s means to impact change! Very caring. Virtually definitely not as a result of they concern additional collective motion over working circumstances and enterprise choices.

With all this, I briefly forgot Microsoft are shopping for Activision Blizzard for $69 billion (£50b).

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