Data Center Operators of Colorado-CWA Union Celebrates NLRB Election Victory
Pueblo, Colorado—Members of Data Center Operators of Colorado-CWA Union won their National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election on August 28, marking a significant step towards ensuring fair treatment and just compensation for workers in the data center industry. The workers are based at International Game Technology’s Pueblo, Colorado data center. IGT is a multinational gaming company which manufactures and distributes slot machines, lottery games and equipment, and other gaming technology. IGT holds the vendor contract for the Colorado Lottery and coordinates lottery vending technology provisioning and support via its Pueblo, Colorado datacenter.
“As the essential ground team responsible for running all operations within the International Game Technology data center in Colorado, we are the backbone ensuring that clients, including the Colorado Lottery and its customers, do not experience any interruption to their services. Our dedication and commitment have been demonstrated day in and day out, with our team working 12-hour shifts, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. However, despite the demanding nature of our roles, compensation has consistently fallen below industry standards. IGT has a net worth of $6.35 billion dollars thanks to its workers—we have earned our fair share. We are proud to celebrate our union election victory and hope to inspire other data center workers across the nation to organize. Through collective bargaining for a strong union contract, we can achieve the fair wages and better working conditions our hard work has earned,” said Alex Lokey, Computer Operator II and member of the Data Center Operators of Colorado-CWA.
Recently, sixty International Game Technology Corp. technicians who are members of CWA Local 1101 in New York ratified a new three-year contract that included significant wage increases, carry over vacation time, and a clear wage progression. The contract was the result of a months-long bargaining and mobilization effort by workers and allies. During the organizing campaign in Colorado, members of CWA Local 1101 extended their solidarity to the members of Data Center Operators of Colorado-CWA.
Workers at the IGT Pueblo data center began organizing after discovering that new workers were being paid substantially higher rates compared to existing staff, many of whom had dedicated years to the company. This unsettling pattern was exacerbated by cumulative negative adjustments to compensation, fringe benefits, overtime calculations, and a 15% pay reduction during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the COVID-19 pay cuts were eventually rescinded, the absence of backpay reflected the lack of appreciation for an essential workforce that continued work uninterrupted during the pandemic.
At the bargaining table workers hope to achieve wage parity with prevailing U.S. IT industry standards, improve overall benefits, overtime policies, and ensure that workers are able to access clear pathways to promotion.
Datacenter workers are the backbone of our nation’s tech infrastructure yet often face low wages and strenuous working conditions.
The Campaign to Organize Digital Employees (CODE-CWA) is a network of worker-organizers and their staff working every single day to build the voice and power necessary to ensure the future of the tech, game, and digital industries in the United States and Canada. CODE-CWA is a project of the Communications Workers of America which represents hundreds of thousands of workers throughout tech, media, telecom, and other industries who stand together to fight for justice on the job and in our communities.