Last week, Burgerville announced that it would allow workers at the Southeast Powell Boulevard location to vote to unionize.
After reaching an agreement on election stipulations with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the fast food company said today that an official vote will take place April 22-23.
"Burgerville is looking forward to the opportunity for all of its employees at Store #41 to participate in a fair and free election to determine whether they wish to be represented by a union," a press person for the corporation told WW in an email today.
The Burgerville Workers Union (BVWU)—which has been campaigning for a union for nearly two years—is excited by the prospect of becoming the first fast food union in U.S. history.
However, spokesperson Emmett Schlenz says, BVWU's call to customers to boycott the burger chain remains.
"Until Burgerville signs a fair contract with the worker, the union continues to call for a boycott," a statement released by the union group reads.
The BVWU rejects the company's claim that "every employee's voice needs to be respected," citing instances where it believes employees were fired for involvement in union organizing activity.
For its part, Burgerville said in a statement today, "There have been no findings to date by the NLRB that any employee has been terminated unlawfully because of union organizing."
The company adds that it was waiting to hold an election on whether or not the store would unionize until 30 percent of its employees signed authorization cards—which are required for an NLRB-governed vote to take place.
"If Burgerville truly respected its workers voices," the BVWU said in a statement, "they would have negotiated with us a long time ago. They would have started paying us living wage, provided consistent scheduling, stopped using E-verify, and offered affordable health care to all crew members a long time ago."
The Portland Burgerville is part of the Industrial Workers of the World—an international labor union. But Schlenz says, "Come contract negotiations, it will be Burgerville workers sitting across the table from corporate."