Activision’s New Union Says The Company Deferred Discussion On Employee Reproductive Healthcare

Bargaining has finally begun between Activision and Game Workers Alliance (GWA), the union formed by Raven Software’s QA team after a successful vote that was held back in May. Activision did pretty much everything it could to disrupt GWA’s union plans, including withholding raises given to the rest of Raven Software and delaying negotiations for six months.

The opening salvos of negotiations began with both sides presenting their positions. GWA wanted to have remote work made permanent, missed raises restored, and clearly defined rules regarding job definition, structure, performance, and leadership duties. Activision didn’t want any of that and instead countered with a Management Rights proposal that would give it the authority to outsource jobs, slash hours, and fire GWA workers at will.

GWA also asked for the company to assure protection for reproductive health care services. Activision "deferred any discussion" on the matter. This is unsurprising, given the company’s silence in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade several months ago.

If there was one thing that summed up the state of negotiations, it would be how they started. Activision initially refused to bargain at all during work hours unless the GWA paid for the missed time of workers. The union "gladly did in order to attempt to get the Company to bargain in good faith," but "good faith" are two words that don’t seem to exist in Activision’s vocabulary. Activision refused, deferred, or outright ignored every proposal the GWA made.

"Although the Company’s continued intransigence is unwelcome at the bargaining table," wrote the GWA, "the Bargaining Committee is confident that through our continued solidarity, mobilization, bargaining, as well as the Company’s illegal bargaining posture, we will prevail."

Meanwhile, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 made $800 million in three days, making it the most successful Call of Duty release in history. But sure, make the union pay to be at the bargaining table.

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