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Apple continues moves to stop retail stores’ unionization plans

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Electronics maker, Apple Inc.’s efforts to keep its stores from unionizing are ongoing, with the iPhone maker attempting to avoid the kinds of labour laws seen as Starbucks.

Managers at Apple’s roughly 270 US retail locations met with employees over the last two weeks to discuss the risks of unionization and provide an update on bargaining between the company and the first unionized store, a location in Towson, Maryland.

The talks, which took place during gatherings known as Daily Downloads, came after a brief lull at Apple. The company held Q&A and information sessions aimed at unions months ago, and its retail chief sent a video to employees on the subject.

Apple also withheld new benefits from unionized locations, which sparked outrage among labour activists.

So far, the efforts appear to be working: only two Apple stores have unionized — Towson and Oklahoma City — and locations that attempted to organize workers in Atlanta and St. Louis have backed down.

As a result, Apple’s current level of unionization is a far cry from the momentum seen at Starbucks and other chains.

The most recent round of meetings was held in all of Apple’s US stores, with the corporate side of the company sending out a prepared message to be read to employees.

During the meetings, management used the state of the Towson store as a cautionary tale, in what some employees saw as a negative light.

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