(TUKWILA, Wash.) – Warehouse workers, employed at the IKEA distribution center in Frederickson, Wash., have voted to join Teamsters Local 117. The 64 workers at the facility came together seeking job security, fair and equal treatment, strong representation, and respect.
“We are excited to have the strength of the Teamsters behind us,” said Mario Sapilak, a 4-year IKEA employee. “We need to have a voice at work and to have management listen to our concerns, and the Teamsters will help us achieve that.”
The workers voted by a nearly 2-1 margin to become Teamsters in an NLRB election that took place on September 18.
“We are happy to welcome the IKEA warehouse workers to the Teamsters,” said Tracey A. Thompson, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 117. “We look forward to working with them to improve their working conditions and to help them achieve a strong contract.”
Prior to the election, Teamsters Local 117 received letters of support from UNI – Global Union, which represents 20 million service sector workers worldwide, as well as unions in Sweden that represent workers at IKEA.
“We are grateful for the strong support of our labor partners abroad as well as the support of our own international union – the International Brotherhood of Teamsters,” Thompson said.
IKEA is the largest furniture retailer in the world. Teamsters Local 117 represents over 2200 warehouse workers in the Pacific Northwest and 16,000 total workers across Washington State.