5 Key Facts about Google Employees Union – Alphabet Workers Union

5 Key Facts about Google Employees Union – Alphabet Workers Union
5 Key Facts about Google Employees Union – Alphabet Workers Union

On January 4, 2021, at 6 in the morning, A letter written by two Google employees announced the Google employees union also known as Alphabet Workers Union’s formation. First of its kind of tech employees union to push for real changes at the company to protect employees from issues related to contracts, employee classification, wage, and compensation. 

Here are the 5 amazing key facts about the newly formed historical Google Employees union named Alphabet Workers Union

  1. Alphabet Workers Union Members will contribute 1% of their total yearly compensation.

Every union needs funds to organize the activities and sustain them. All Alphabet Workers Union has already committed to keeping aside 1% of the yearly compensation to go toward union dues. Funds will be used for lobbying for a good reason, including policy changes and workers’ rights. Union will have an elected board of directors and fully paid organizing staff.

  1. Indian IT company HCL inspired Google Employees union idea.

Google Employees union idea is inspired by a successful union drive by Google contract employees of Indian IT company HCL. 

The real story goes back to June 2018 when Ben Gwin joined HCL as a Technical Analyst and placed on a contract project in Google. During his child’s mother’s death, he received only three days’ bereavement from HCL before he had to return to work.

According to Damon Di Cicco, the United Steelworkers’ lead organizer on the HCL campaign, Ben’s conversations with other co-workers revealed that many people had similar concerns and felt like second-class citizens in the Google projects and facilities. 

On September 24, 2019, Contract workers at Google’s Pittsburgh office voted to join the union in what is believed to be the first instance of tech workers unionizing in the US.

The unionization effort at HCL has gained national attention as an indicator of the broader swell in employee activism among tech workers, including recent walkouts at tech giants like Google and Amazon. Unionization efforts are still sporadic among white-collar tech workers. 

  1. Alphabet Workers Union is part of CWA’s, a larger union for Tech workers in the United States.

The newly formed employee’s union is part of – The Campaign to Organize Digital Employees (CODE-CWA), a network of employees and workers from the tech, game, and digital industries in the United States and Canada.

If you look at the Alphabet Worker union website and logo, it is very similar to CODE-CWA.

  1. Over 200 employees join the union, and it is open for all employees, including contractors, vendors, and from us and Canada.

As of January 4, 2020, approximately 226 employees have joined the Alphabet Workers union and spreading the word to other employees.

The union is open for all full-time employees, contract employees, and other vendor-based employees. People from India cannot currently join this union; only employees from the USA and Canada can join.

  1. The primary goal of the Alphabet Workers union is to ensure that workers know what they’re working on and can do their work at a fair wage, without fear of abuse, retaliation, or discrimination

Last month National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint against Google. Additionally, Google employees have publicly criticized the company over many issues, such as Project Dragonfly, a censored search engine Google was designing for the Chinese market, and Project Maven, which worked with the Department of Defense to provide artificial intelligence tools. 

Starting in 2018, more than 20,000 employees have left Google for various reasons.

What did Google or Alphabet say about the newly farmed employees union Alphabet worker Union?

According to Kara Silverstein, Director of people operations- “we’ll continue engaging directly with all our employees as we have worked hard to create a supportive and rewarding workplace for our workforce.”

What Union Member Google Employees say?

According to the Christopher Schmidt – SOFTWARE ENGINEER
Interacting with the HR department of a trillion-dollar corporation is terrifying. After all the stories we’ve heard, I believe no worker should have to enter that conversation alone.
According to the Ojas Deshpande – SOFTWARE ENGINEER
Because what this company does affects millions of people around the world. And these decisions shouldn’t be controlled by a handful of execs, and monetary profits shouldn’t govern them.

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Suggested Read: Top 5 Myths about Labour Laws in India for IT Employees