Brooklyn, New York [Oct. 2, 2019] – Kickstarter employees today officially requested from Kickstarter management voluntary recognition of their union with the Office and Professional Employees International Union Local 153, AFL-CIO.
On Wednesday, Kickstarter United (KSRU) members approached management to ask for voluntary recognition of their union after a months-long campaign to organize employees at the crowdfunding company. In May, Kickstarter management had declined to voluntarily recognize the union, preempting its employees’ official request. The company spent the ensuing months employing typical union-busting and intimidation techniques, including hiring a crisis-management public relations firm and firing two employees who served on the KRSU organizing committee.
In its official request for voluntary recognition, KRSU wrote it is prepared to demonstrate majority support for the union through a mutually agreeable neutral third party, and that “our goal is and has always been to create an environment of inclusion and solidarity; transparency and accountability; and representation for everyone at Kickstarter.
“Forming our union has not been a quick or superficial process because we’ve intentionally set the bar high to maximize inclusion and make sure our co-workers who have demonstrated support have done so with eyes wide open,” KRSU’s request continued. “Forming a union will provide workers and management with a framework for a more collaborative and accountable relationship and will be consistent with the values our backers and creators expect from the management of Kickstarter.”
Throughout the organizing process, KRSU members have demanded greater transparency when it comes to company policies, equality across gender and racial lines for all Kickstarter employees, and stronger job protections – a demand that became even more relevant in the wake of Kickstarter management’s firing of the two employees for their union activities.
“The overwhelming support and solidarity shown by our creators and backers is so important to us as we fight for these values in the workplace,” said a KSRU spokesperson. “We are so thankful to them for standing with us in our efforts to make Kickstarter a better, more inclusive place to work.”
“Everyone who works at Kickstarter does so because we believe deeply in our company’s mission to help bring creative projects to life and the commitments made in Kickstarter’s charter,” the request continued. “By unionizing, we will safeguard and enrich these commitments to creativity, equity, and a positive impact on society. We want Kickstarter to thrive and prosper as an organization, and we ask them to recognize the union now.”