- Workers at Raven Software announced their plan to launch a union last week.
- Raven Software's parent company Activision Blizzard declined to voluntarily recognize the union.
- The workers say they have a supermajority, and will now formally petition the NLRB.
Activision Blizzard has refused to voluntarily recognize a union set up by a group of quality assurance workers.
The new union, called the Game Workers Alliance, was set up by the group of 34 workers at Raven Software. Raven Software is a subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, owner of the wildly popular Call of Duty franchise.
The workers asked management to formally recognize the union on Friday with the help of the Communications Workers of America labor union, The Washington Post reported.
A spokesperson for Activision told gaming news site Polygon that the company had declined to recognize the union.
"At Activision Blizzard, we deeply respect the rights of all employees to make their own decisions about whether or not to join a union. We carefully reviewed and considered the CWA initial request last week and tried to find a mutually acceptable solution with the CWA that would have led to an expedited election process. Unfortunately, the parties could not reach an agreement," the spokesperson told Polygon.
The union told the Post it has a supermajority and intends to file a formal petition with the National Labor Relations Board. If the NLRB ratifies the union, Raven Software will be legally obligated to negotiate with it.
Polygon and the Post also reported that Raven Software Monday told the quality assurance workers that it would be restructuring the department, spreading them amongst various other departments rather than housing them all in one division.
In a statement to Polygon, an Activision spokesperson said: "This change will enhance the collaborative work our teams do to support our games and players and make the opportunities for our talented QA staff even stronger."
The CWA told the Post in a statement Tuesday that the move was "nothing more than a tactic to thwart Raven QA workers who are exercising their right to organize."
It is not clear whether the restructure will impact the quality assurance workers' ability to unionize. Activision Blizzard did not immediately respond when contacted by Insider for comment.
The GWA and CWA did not immediately respond when contacted by Insider for comment.
Microsoft announced last week it plans to buy Activision Blizzard in an all-cash deal valued at around $68.7 billion.
The state of California sued Activision Blizzard in July 2021 saying the company fostered a "pervasive frat boy" work culture in which female staff were frequently harassed.
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