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Borders Boycott Not Over - New York Solidarity, October 1997

Capital District Industrial Workers of the World reminds Solidarity members that the boycott against Borders Books & Music still is in effect, with no end in sight, according to Greg Giorgio, local RW delegate.

"Good union folk should take their business elsewhere, preferably to an independent, locally-owned bookseller," said Giorgio.

He noted that, while Miriam Fried, who was fired by a Borders store in Center City Borders in Philadelphia last year, has abandoned the idea of returning to work at Borders, "the union-busting strategies continue within the mega-chain of 160 Borders and some 900 other outlets in the Walden Book, Planet Music, and Brentano's retail empire."

Fried was an inside organizer in a failed IWW drive to unionize the Borders store. At least five other Borders have voted for representation by the United Food and Commercial Workers, in National Labor Relations Board elections since that time, but negotiations are stalled in each case, he said.

"This appears to be a further link in their anti-union strategy chain," Giorgio added.

The greater body of the IWW met in General Assembly over Labor Day weekend in St. Louis, Mo., and adopted a resolution which, in part, states:

"The Industrial Workers of the World continues, therefore, to call upon all fellow workers to boycott Borders Books...regular national picketing is suspended, but will be resumed in the, event of renewed firings of union supporters."

"This doesn't mean that we won't be back out on the picket line soon," said Fellow Worker Giorgio.

The UFCW organizing drive in Albany has been "on hold for quite some time," he added, urging local shoppers to "let Borders know they don't appreciate their techniques like transfers of union supporters to other stores and promotions of union backers, to get them out of the bargaining unit."