Philadelphia Home Depot workers reject first storewide union in vote

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Home Depot workers in Philadelphia voted against forming the first store-wide labor union on Saturday night.

Workers at the world’s largest home improvement retailer voted 165 to 51 to reject forming Home Depot Workers United to represent 274 employees at the store, the National Labor Relations Board said.

The result is considered a loss for an upstart movement to organize at major U.S. companies.

Some activist workers have succeeded in unionization efforts. Employees at over 230 Starbucks locations in the U.S. have voted to unionize since late 2021. Near the end of August, Chipotle Mexican Grill workers at a Lansing, Michigan, restaurant voted to join the Teamsters, marking the first instance for the restaurant chain.

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Home Depot spokesperson Margaret Smith told WHYY that the company is “happy” that workers at the Philadelphia store voted to continue working directly with the company.  (istock / iStock)

However, union organizers have since suffered setbacks in getting collective bargaining off the ground or organizing more unions.

Vincent Quiles, the Home Depot employee leading the unionization effort, told WHYY-FM that the attempt to organize workers had been a "tall order."

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
HDTHE HOME DEPOT INC.284.08+2.61+0.93%

"It wouldn’t be an easy fight to have," Quiles said. "But you do these things because you believe them to be right."

Home Depot spokesperson Margaret Smith told WHYY that the company is "happy" that workers at the Philadelphia store voted to continue working directly with the company. 

Home Depot workers at a Philadelphia store rejected to unionize in a 165 to 51 vote on Saturday night. (iStock / iStock)

"That connection is important to our culture, and we will continue listening to our associates and making The Home Depot a great place to work and grow," Smith said.

The Atlanta-based company employs about 500,000 people at its 2,316 stores in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

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Home Depot and union organizations have five days to file objections.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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