Keywords Studios developers work in support of dragon age 4 Manufacturer BioWare is trying to unionize. That’s according to an April 20 motion filed with the Alberta Labor Relations Board. The workforce is preparing for a union vote following recent efforts to organize workers at other game studios.
“United Food and Commercial Workers Canada Union, Local No. 401 applied under the Labor Relations Code to become a certified negotiator for a unit of employees of Keywords Studios BC, Inc. who compromised all employees employed in development support at BioWare’s Edmonton office” reads the notice issued by Alberta’s Labor Relations Board was shared on Reddit. A representative of the Management Board confirmed the correctness.
Keywords Studios is a global video game services company that contracts with other companies for things like graphics, localization, and quality assurance. BioWare’s Edmonton headquarters, the acclaimed studio behind it mass effect, dragon time, and other RPG classics, is one of their clients. Developers hired through the company are listed in the credits for both Mass Effect Andromeda and anthem. Union organizing would allow the workers concerned to negotiate an agreement for better working conditions, such as better pay, benefits and overtime arrangements.
After the board has confirmed that the motion meets its requirements, including that there is at least 40% support among workers wishing to join the union, workers have until May 3 to object.
It’s not immediately clear how many employees are attempting to unionize or what their roles are. EA, Keywords Studios, and UFCW Local 401 did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The announcement comes as organizing for workers in the video game industry appears to be gaining momentum. Indie studio Vodeo was the first in North America to unionize in December, and QA staff at call of Duty Studio Raven software just cleared her first hurdle with the US National Labor Relations Board to hold a vote on unionization.
Last week, an NLRB complaint was filed against Nintendo of America, alleging retaliation when a contact worker was fired after he asked questions about unions at a meeting in February. sources told kotaku. Nintendo said the termination was due to an NDA violation and denies there is any union activity at its North American headquarters.
https://kotaku.com/bioware-qa-union-mass-effect-dragon-age-star-wars-keywo-1848839482 BioWare contractors on games like Mass Effect try to unionize