Kickstarter employees vote to unionize

Kickstarter employees vote to unionize
© Getty Images

Employees at crowdfunding company Kickstarter voted to unionize on Tuesday, becoming the first big-name technology company to do so.

The staff members voted 47 to 36 to affiliate with the Office and Professional Employees International Union, which represents more than 100,000 white collar workers. 

"We support and respect this decision, and we are proud of the fair and democratic process that got us here. We’ve worked hard over the last decade to build a different kind of company, one that measures its success by how well it achieves its mission: helping to bring creative projects to life. Our mission has been common ground for everyone here during this process, and it will continue to guide us as we enter this new phase together," Kickstarter's CEO Aziz Hasan said in a statement.

ADVERTISEMENT

Workers at the company have been organizing as Kickstarter United (KRSU) for over a year, pushing for equal pay, transparency from management and more inclusive hiring.

“We believe unionizing provides a path toward furthering all of our goals,” Oriana Leckert, a KSRU spokeswoman and senior journalism outreach leader at Kickstarter, said in a statement.

“It was truly an honor to get to have deep conversations with so many of my colleagues around these issues. Utilizing our collective power to improve our workplace and our professional lives will increase Kickstarter’s ability to have a radical, positive impact on society by allowing us all to advocate for workers’ rights, which is a core pillar of the fight against inequality,” Leckert said.

Tuesday's vote comes amid rising worker activism at technology companies.

Ninety Google contractors in Pittsburgh and more than 2,000 Google cafeteria staff in the Bay Area voted to unionize last year.

Workers at several other companies, including Amazon and Microsoft, have organized to press leadership into dropping controversial contracts.