Macy's workers launch three-day Black Friday strike in Washington
Tukwila, Washington - Macy's workers in Washington state are launching a three-day strike starting on Black Friday to protest unfair wages and labor conditions at the department store chain.
More than 400 workers at three of the largest Macy's stores in Washington are walking off the job on Friday and won't be back in stores until Monday, UFCW Local 3000 announced.
The Macy's employees are kicking things off with a Striking Workers Parade at SouthCenter Mall in Tukwila.
The action comes after 96% of workers, frustrated with the company's failure to reach a union contract deal, voted to authorize the strike in October.
Macy's reported more than $1 billion in profits last year and spent $600 million on stock buybacks and paid out $173 million in dividends to shareholders, while starting pay for workers in Washington is at or near minimum wage.
"Macy’s CEO gets $11 million per year while a lot of his workers rely on food banks, and some can’t even afford to see doctors because of the low wages and the expensive healthcare," Azia Domingo, a Macy's worker in Tukwila, told The Guardian.
Macy's accused of unfair labor practices
Macy's has been accused of prohibiting the union from speaking to workers at the workplace, as well as surveilling union members and failing to bargain in good faith.
The union is also speaking out against the unfair treatment of Liisa Luick, a long-time employee at the Lynnwood location who was suspended for two weeks without pay in 2022 after calling the police to report a safety threat.
"We've had assaults in our stores, and we've had shootings out in our parking lots at the time when we have to walk out to our cars with no consideration at all," Luick told The Guardian.
"They’ve worked us to death on skeletal staffing, and it's just not fair," she added. "When we see that they've made all these billions, when they pledged to put money back into the business, they're establishing 30 new stores. They have the Macy’s Day Parade, they have the fireworks. We're angry, and even our customers comment on it."
Cover photo: Screenshot/X/@UFCW_3000