Employees at Seattle-based company Card Kingdom are taking steps towards unionisation and bargaining. Card Kingdom is a seller of Magic: The Gathering cards that’s a major part of MTG’s secondary market. A group of its employees going by the name Card Kingdom Union are seeking “a living wage” with “meaningful raises”, more input on company policy, and greater transparency. They say they’re organising with the UFCW 3000, a 50,000-strong union that spans Washington, north-east Oregon and northern Idaho.
On April 21, Card Kingdom Union posted an open letter to the publishing platform Medium, listing its demands and outlining its discontent. The open letter alleges a “lack of empathy, lack of transparency and general mismanagement” on the part of Card Kingdom and says the company requires “an overhaul and re-examination of its value system”.
“You express that you want us to be a 30% shareholder, and yet we are constantly kept in the dark,” the open letter claims, adding that “Our revenue hit a new peak during the past two years. Our wages, benefits, and ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) contributions do not reflect this.”
Card Kingdom Union also started a Change.org petition on April 21, asking people to sign in solidarity and for Card Kingdom to show neutrality whilst CKU organises. At time of writing, the petition has over 3000 signatures.
Card Kingdom Union’s list of demands, which can be found in both the Medium open letter and the Change.org petition, include the removal of wage caps, more paid holidays, flexible schedules and hours, and for workers to share in the financial success of Card Kingdom.
John Morris, an owner and founder of Card Kingdom tells Wargamer: “We have always tried to hear the voices and concerns of our employees, and we are eager to continue listening.” He adds: “Efforts to unionise and any company responses to such efforts are complex and bound by federal laws and regulations. These conversations take time and require complete information and understanding.”
“We will continue working with our legal counsel to understand this complexity and to arrive at an intentional, thoughtful, and employee-centred way forward.”
Wargamer approached Card Kingdom Union for comment on April 22, and the group told us it would respond after an organiser meeting. You can find CKU’s statement here.