The iconic DC bookstore politics and prose unite first for DC – Commercial Observer

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Employees of the famous Politics and prose The Washington, DC bookstore formed the district’s first bookstore union, the unions and retailers said Monday.

The couple who own the shop Bradley Graham and Lissa Muscatin, decided to voluntarily recognize the union about three weeks after the union organizers held an election at the National Labor Relations Office (NLRB) – the federal body charged with overseeing trade union elections.

“We are proud to be joining the growing movement of booksellers and baristas across the country who have unionized their workplaces,” said the Organizing Committee of Politics and Prose rolled into one Explanation. “Establishing our union has not only served as an affirmation of our shared values ​​within the political and prose community, it will also strengthen our workplace and ensure the long-term success of our beloved community center.”

United Food & Commercial Workers Local 400, a union in the United States and Canada, will and will occupy 54 positions from more than 100 political and prose workers represents the union at the negotiating table as both sides are discussing a unionized contract.

Staff urged to unionize for a number of reasons, including the pandemic-related staff shortage that had at least caused it three employees quit the bookseller, DCist reported.

Graham and Muscatine decided to recognize the union – rather than let the NLRB vote – after Counterplay from high profile writers and clients when Graham said union recognition without a vote would “disenfranchise“Employees who did not sign union cards or who wanted more time to make decisions, DCist reported. The co-owners have also hired Jones Day, a national law firm controversial for its aggressive tactics.

The two retracted that statement a week later, saying they were open to volunteering for the union. Muscatine and Graham also hired a new lawyer. Kathy Krieger of the company James & Hoffmann, Who represented unions, Individuals and nonprofits involved in civil litigation, the firm said.

Graham declined to comment on the emerging union and union organizers at Politics and Prosa, and Local 400 did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Employees at the bookstore’s three locations have previously reported DCist that they were hoping for a union Negotiate salaries and improve the scheduling of overworked employees.

Politics and prose is far from the first business to see a union offensive during the coronavirus pandemic. An early example was that Washingtonian Magazine, whose employees formed a 17-member union a month after the company’s CEO was announced controversial back-to-office plan in an op-ed in The Washington Post.

The labor movement has also spread to e-commerce and retail in the wake of the pandemic. Amazon Manpower in Bessemer, Ala. and Staten Island, NY Warehouses have struggled to unionize workers in each area at the two distribution centers. Workers at a Starbucks Have business in Buffalo, NY Voted for a union a first for the coffee giant. Recently employed by the large architecture firm SHoP architects in New York City started a union action.

The growth of unions after years of dwindling support is part of wider and unprecedented changes in the labor market. More than 4.5 million Americans quit their jobs in November 2021 in a record for the United States, The New York Times reported. The coronavirus – that has 821,2019 people killed in the US – has also received more public support for key workers who are taking advantage of. have not recognized rapidly increasing corporate profits, Time magazine reported.

Celia Young can be reached at [email protected].

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