MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (NewsNation Now) — More than 200 Google employees formed a workers’ union for the first time in the history of its parent company Alphabet Inc.
On Monday, Google workers announced the foundation of the Alphabet Workers Union with the support of one of the country’s biggest labor unions, the Communications Workers of America (CWA).
All employees of Alphabet companies, including contractors, will be eligible for membership regardless of role or classification. The union aims to ensure that employees work at a fair wage, without fear of abuse, retaliation or discrimination, the union heads said.
“Our company’s motto used to be ‘Don’t be evil.’ An organized workforce will help us live up to it,” the union says on its website.
Google has been under fire from the U.S. labor regulator, which has accused the company of unlawfully questioning several workers who were then terminated for protesting against company policies and trying to organize a union. Google has said it was confident it acted legally.
“All aspects of our work should be transparent, including the freedom to decline to work on projects that don’t align with our values. We need to know the impact of our work, whether it’s on Alphabet workers, our communities, or the world” the union leaders said online, adding that so far 226 employees had signed union cards with the Communications Workers of America.
“Our employees have protected labor rights that we support. But as we’ve always done, we’ll continue engaging directly with all our employees,” Kara Silverstein, director of people operations at Google, said on Monday.
Alphabet Workers first announced the news in an opinion piece in the New York Times Monday morning.
“This is historic—the first union at a major tech company by and for all tech workers,” said Dylan
Baker, Software Engineer. “We will elect representatives, we will make decisions democratically,
we will pay dues, and we will hire skilled organizers to ensure all workers at Google know they
can work with us if they actually want to see their company reflect their values.”