We are unionizing at Half Price Books!
At Half Price Books, booksellers are the ones that do the majority of the day-to-day operations, and our labor is why this company is profitable. The work we do is valuable, and we deserve to be treated like it. When you have a union at your store, you and your coworkers have a voice on the job. Together, we have the ability to negotiate wages, health and safety standards, and benefits.
Booksellers at stores across the country are coming together to advocate for better wages, working conditions, and job protections. You deserve a union contract and all the benefits that come with it, too!
Start a union at your Half Price Books
What we’re fighting for
Half Price Books Workers United is a coalition of booksellers across the U.S. coming together for:
A Living Wage
Our work is valuable and important, and we deserve to be compensated fairly.
Job Security & Transparency
We want real job security, which includes a “just cause” progressive discipline system, no more hiring workers as temps to fill regular positions, and no more laying off workers based on opaque criteria.
We want an open line of communication between workers and management. With a Labor-Management Committee, we will be able to speak directly and regularly with management about workplace issues.
Better Health & Safety Systems
For COVID safety and beyond, we need to be able to advocate for our needs on the job as they emerge, which will make our workplace safer and more accessible for everyone!
We need better training systems for new operational policies and procedures, as well as anti-harassment, de-escalation, and sensitivity trainings.
Kansas City is quickly becoming the hub for a Half Price Books union effort
KANSAS CITY, Kans. — Employees at Westport’s Half Price Books voted to unionize on Nov. 17. Overland Park employees unionized in July. If workers at the Olathe store vote to unionize later this month, Half Price Books Workers United will have organized about 10% of the company.
Twelve workers at Kansas City’s Half Price Books in Westport unanimously won a Nov. 17 vote to unionize, making them the 11th unionized store in the country.
The vote at the Westport store is the latest in a succession of Half Price Books unions starting up in the area. Employees at the store in Overland Park unanimously voted to unionize in July; Half Price Books in Wichita unionized last year. On Nov. 30, workers at the Olathe location will vote on whether to join their colleagues in United Food and Commercial Workers Local 2 and other stores in Half Price Books Workers United.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does it mean to unionize with UFCW?
UFCW, America’s retail union, is now representing HPB workers at six locations to get them the contracts and benefits they deserve. When you have a union at your store, you and your coworkers have the ability to negotiate wages, health and safety standards, and benefits together.
Have any HPB stores won a union election yet?
Yep! Stores in Minnesota, Illinois, Kentucky, Kansas, and Indiana have all filed for elections with the national labor board, and 12 stores have voted yes to unionize so far.
What kinds of benefits and protections have HPB workers won already?
Thanks to the hard work of our members, we’ve already secured a comprehensive COVID safety policy, and are currently at the negotiating table to guarantee our benefits in a union contract.
But I like my manager; why would I want to unionize?
HPB stores aren’t unionizing because we dislike our managers. But when you have a union contract, you can make sure that there are protections in place so you can’t be taken advantage of, no matter who your manager is.
What if I like the way my HPB location works now, and don’t want to change anything?
Locking in the benefits that you love at HPB in a union contract means that the company can’t take them away on a whim!
Who can be included in the union? Is it just booksellers, or can shift leaders vote too?
Shift leaders are proud union members at our unionized stores! We have overcome challenges by corporate leadership in order to include shift leaders as welcome members of our union in Minnesota, and intend to meet those challenges elsewhere as necessary.
Will I get in trouble if I talk to you or my coworkers about a union?
It’s your legal right to talk about working conditions with anyone you want! You can sign up for a call here to learn the smartest ways to have those conversations.
How much do union dues cost?
You won’t pay a cent in union dues until you have a union contract — and you’ll get to vote on that. If your contract isn’t worth the membership cost, simply vote no and send your negotiating committee back to HPB to wager for more. Union dues are typically no more than one hours’ pay per week.
How do I get started organizing MY store?
Reach out and talk to us! Fill out the form here to schedule a call to learn more about why your coworkers are unionizing.