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Game Workers Unite working with devs from a dozen studios towards unionization

Game Workers Unite working with devs from a dozen studios towards unionization

December 27, 2018 | By Alissa McAloon

December 27, 2018 | By Alissa McAloon
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More: Console/PC

The pro-union organization Game Workers Unite is currently working with the staff of a dozen different studios, looking to arm those individuals with the tools needed to start the unionization conversation. 

Polygon reports that Game Workers Unite is actively working with devs from at least 12 established studios in North America to provide the resources and training those teams will need if they want to establish a union and negotiate for terms of employment and compensation.

In some cases, Game Workers Unite is working alongside an unnamed existing labor union, though organization co-founder Emma Kinama says that most of those dev teams are relying on resources from GWU alone.

“It’s about learning to have one-on-one meetings with people, learning about the issues that are affecting them in the workplace and representing how those can be addressed with collective action,” Kinema told Polygon. “How to organize a bargaining committee, and an organizing committee and things like that, but also how to do things safely and securely under the watch of the employer for as long as possible.”

The topic of labor issues and unionization boiled to a point following several conversations about studio closures, excessive crunch, and sudden layoffs that took place this year, leading to the formation of Game Workers Unite. The organization aims to, as laid out in a blog post about its recent recognition as a union in the UK, increase the quality of life for game workers by seeking to "end the institutional practice of excessive and unpaid overtime, improve diversity and inclusion at all levels, support abused or harassed workers, and secure a steady and living wage for all."

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