To the management of Index Media,
Well, this is an easy one.
Workers at various Index Media properties, like The Stranger, Portland Mercury, and Everout, are unionizing with CWA-News Guild. As Seattle residents and fans of The Stranger, we have some earnest advice for the higher-ups at Index: you gotta recognize the union. For your own sake.
The Stranger has stood with working people, and with unions, in their fights for justice in Seattle and beyond. Their endorsements highlight pro-union candidates, and shame assholes endorsed by Seattle Chamber of Commerce and other anti-union groups. The Stranger’s excellent reporting lets Starbucks workers tell their stories, correctly calls union-busting CEOs like Howard Schultz “brats”, and exposes nonprofits who hire union-busting law firms.
So, Index Media, you might not think a bunch of socialists from Seattle DSA would be on your side, but we’re being sincere here. You’ve got a newsroom full of energetic reporters whose entire body of work is about being on the side of the common person against the bosses and landlords who run Seattle. These troublemakers come to you saying you should voluntarily recognize their union.
They’re going to get their union, because they already are a union, and you know it. If you voluntarily recognize their union, you get to skip a bunch of bullshit, save a ton of money in legal fees, and get straight to the part where you negotiate a contract. If you don’t, you get an angry group of people whose job is literally writing about how you suck. If they weren’t good at getting a massive audience of Seattlites to read about unfair bosses, they wouldn’t be working at The Stranger.
So, what’s it gonna be? Will you skip to the part where you negotiate a contract with your writers, or do you want them to use that creative energy on clever picket signs? Should your social media team do their jobs of promoting your paper, or should those viral tweets be about how you’re trying to bust the union?
Honestly, it would be way more fun for us at Seattle DSA to plan actions with the union and be at their picket lines, so arguing that you should voluntarily recognize them isn’t even in our best interests. If you’d rather listen to us leading chants outside your fancy offices instead of listening to us telling you to recognize the union, we can do that, too.
Seattle DSA Labor Working Group