Elysian Brewing workers at Georgetown brewery vote to unionize

Sep 5, 2023, 1:05 PM

elysian brewing unionize...

(Photo from Flickr @EdWellmeier)

(Photo from Flickr @EdWellmeier)

Workers at Elysian Brewing in South Seattle have unionized their brewery production, as 33 employees working in the brewery, packaging, quality assurance, and warehouse join Teamsters Local 117.

“I love the people I work with at the Elysian and uniting as a team to fight for what we deserve has been a dream of mine for years,” Shannon Mullins, a quality assurance technician with five years at the company, said in a press statement. “When we stand together, we have the power to get what we want.”

More on organized labor: Unions can no longer block release of state workers’ contact info, state Supreme Court rules

Workers at the facility have been working with the Teamsters for three months in order to organize a union at the facility, and an election was held with the National Labor Relations Board on Aug. 22.

The main issues that the group brought up in their unionization were “equitable wages, job security, and favorable working conditions.”

“My decision to support this union campaign is a demonstration of my commitment to the well-being of my friends and colleagues,” Derek Bargerstock, a brewer who has been with Elysian for nearly three years, said in a statement. “This is an opportunity for us to shape the future of the industry and to pave the way for other breweries by showing them that union representation is possible. It’s time for us all to stand up for what is right and make history in the process.”

Elysian Brewing is owned by Belgian drink manufacturer Anheuser-Busch InBev after the company bought the 28-year-old brewery in 2015. The newly formed union plans on meeting with management within the next two to three weeks to negotiate a new contract.

John Scearcy, the secretary-treasurer of Teamsters Local 117, showed his support for the union at the brewery by joining the Teamsters union, saying that they would support them at the bargaining table.

“We are thrilled to welcome workers at the Elysian to Teamsters Local 117,” Scearcy said in prepared remarks. “These workers showed tremendous courage and solidarity in demanding a voice on the job. We look forward to bringing their priorities to the bargaining table and negotiating a strong Teamster contract that gives them the respect they deserve.”

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Elysian Brewing workers at Georgetown brewery vote to unionize