Raven Software Employees Win Unionization Vote, Become First Union At Activision Blizzard

The Game Workers Alliance, a union of Raven Software high quality assurance staff, has efficiently voted to develop into formally acknowledged by Activision Blizzard. That makes them solely the second formal union within the North American online game business, following Vodeo Games unionizing in December 2021, and the primary inside a serious U.S. sport writer. 

According to the Washington Post, the Milwaukee department of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) counted mailed-in ballots submitted by eligible Raven staff. Out of twenty-two ballots, 19 voted Yes, and three voted No. Parties have till May 31 to file an objection. If nobody does, then the end result turns into official. 

This story started final December within the wake of the continued Activision Blizzard sexual misconduct scandal. The writer unexpectedly laid off 12 contracted Raven QA staff, roughly a 3rd of the division, which included staff that had not too long ago relocated to the Wisconsin-based workplace. Outraged Raven staff staged a weeks-long strike that ended when over 30 staff shaped the GWA.

The GWA requested Activision Blizzard to voluntarily acknowledge it by January 25 of this yr, however the writer declined, stating the 2 events couldn’t attain an settlement. Instead, Activision Blizzard responded by changing all of its U.S.-based contracted QA testers to full-time staff eligible for advantages and pay raises. However, Raven staff, which had already transformed its contract staff to full-time standing, weren’t eligible for the pay advantages in response to Activision on account of “authorized obligations beneath the National Labor Relations Board” This led to the GWA looking for a vote due to a good ruling by the NLRB. Activision challenged the method by making an attempt to make it in order that the whole lot of Raven’s 230-person group must vote reasonably than the 21 affected QA staff, however this try failed. 

Unionization talks have elevated over the previous yr as a result of fallout of the Activision Blizzard lawsuits, with extra designers encouraging studios to prepare. Activision is within the midst of being acquired by Microsoft for $69 billion. The Xbox maker acknowledged in March that it will respect both end result of at present’s vote.  

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