Apple announces pay rise for retail workers and discourages unionization

In an email to workers on Wednesday, Apple said it would raise pay for its retail workers to $22 an hour starting in July. The new wage would be an increase of $2 an hour.

“Supporting and retaining the best team members in the world allows us to provide the best, most innovative products and services to our customers,” the company said in a statement to reporters, according to CNBC.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the email sent to employees.

A pay raise was part of Apple’s annual performance review process, the company said. Google and Microsoft also recently announced salary increases for employees. Still, many tech companies have reported financial difficulties.

Amid a potential recession, inflation and supply chain issues, companies like Meta and Uber have announced a slowdown in hiring. Meanwhile, companies Robinhood and Carvana have announced workforce reductions.

On the same day that Apple announced the raise, a leaked audio was released of an Apple vice president discouraging unionization.

Apple’s Deirdre O’Brien, vice president of retail and people, spoke for six minutes to 58,000 retail employees on Wednesday. The video has since been the subject of criticism from employees. Vice News first reported the six-minute audio leak.

“We have a relationship based on open, collaborative and direct engagement, which I believe could fundamentally change if a store were represented by a union under a collective bargaining agreement,” O’Brien told employees.

O’Brien’s comments come amid pressure from Apple employees at the Grand Central store to form a union. Since several other Apple stores in the United States have announced unionization efforts. Company employees have yet to formally form one.

The push to organize has also affected workers at Starbucks and Amazon. Both companies are accused of anti-union activities.

“I worry about what it would mean to put another organization in the middle of our relationship, one that doesn’t have a deep understanding of Apple or our business…one that I don’t believe shares our commitment to you,” added O’Brien.

She also said a union would slow down the speed with which the company resolves internal issues.

Apple has yet to respond to O’Brien’s comments.

Tech companies such as Apple, Uber and Tesla said they would cover abortion-related travel costs for employees
Tech companies such as Apple, Uber and Tesla said they would cover abortion-related travel costs for employees
Photo: AFP/Nicolas Kamm

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