VANCOUVER, Wash. (April 4, 2018) – Burgerville today informed the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that it will waive an NLRB hearing and support the free vote by employees at Burgerville Store #41, located at 3504 SE 92nd Ave., Portland, OR, 97266, to decide if they want to unionize.
This announcement comes following a March 28 filing by the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) with the NLRB seeking to represent Burgerville employees at Burgerville Store #41.
“Burgerville believes that every employee’s voice needs to be respected and protected in determining whether a majority of employees wish to be represented by a union,” stated Beth Brewer, Senior VP of Burgerville Operations. “The NLRB has very specific rules, and the voting process is created so that it’s not a few individuals deciding on behalf of an entire company or one store.”
Burgerville and the NLRB will work to create a stipulated election agreement. The election will be determined by votes cast, and the IWW will need a majority of the vote of employees at Burgerville Store #41 to win.
“If the IWW were to win an election at Burgerville Store #41, Burgerville will bargain in good faith with the union,” says Brewer. “We believe our business and community is best served when all people are served with love. This includes our employees at Burgerville Store #41, the many farms and ranches who partner with Burgerville to provide fresh, local and sustainable food, and the millions of customers served over time.”
The “Burgerville Workers Union” (BVWU) was formed by the Portland Chapter of the IWW, with support from the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) in April 2016. The IWW is an international labor union based in Chicago. Since that time, under federal labor law, Burgerville has been unable to make any changes in wages, hours or working conditions that would constitute a change in the status quo for the company.
“For over 55 years we’ve worked successfully and directly with our employees; if the employees vote to form a union, that will change, and they will be represented by the IWW,” explained Brewer.
The IWW—which is funding the Burgerville campaign, is deeply involved in strategy, organizing, and tactics and is attempting to create the “Nation’s First Fast Food Union.” Burgerville is not the first fast food restaurant that it has attempted to unionize. It attempted to organize employees at Starbucks in New York and Chicago in 2004 and Jimmy John’s in Minneapolis in 2010.
Please contact the NLRB Portland office at 503-326-3085 for further details about their voting process and timeline.
Established in 1961, Burgerville, headquartered in Vancouver, WA, is an innovative and industry-leading restaurant company with 42 locations throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington. Over 1,500 employees strong, the hometown favorite brings guests seasonal, local food from 989 Northwest family farms and ranches. Burgerville is built on a tradition based in its mission to “serve with love.” At Burgerville, the commitment to fresh, local and sustainable values is about helping people and communities thrive.