Patagonia Workers in Reno Store Vote to Join Union


The associates at a Patagonia store in Reno, Nev. have voted to join the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 711, marking the first successful unionization effort at a Patagonia store. Along with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), the UFCW has been making inroads at other outdoor retailers recently, organizing nine REI locations across the U.S. with the RWDSU and five Vertical Endeavors climbing gyms in Minnesota.

The vote marks the second labor success in recent weeks: Starbucks and the Workers United union agreed on a framework for collective bargaining in February 2024.

“America’s love of the outdoors deserves to be met with an appreciation for the workers who make our adventures possible,” said Marc Perrone, President of UFCW International in a statement. “Whether in retail, rock climbing or beyond, all workers deserve to have representation on the job. We are excited to welcome Patagonia workers to the UFCW and look forward to reaching a strong union contract that reflects their hard work and experience.”

Retailers in this space have not been particular fans of unionizing efforts. In August 2022, a Berkeley, Calif. REI store was only the chain’s second location to unionize, and the UFCW and RWDSU accused REI of unfair labor practices in November 2023.


“My fellow coworkers and I are now standing together with the protections of union representation and about to negotiate a contract, all thanks to our union siblings over at REI whose progress inspired us to continue the hard work of unionizing this industry,” said Nick Helmreich, a retail team lead at the Reno store. “We are ready to fight for a contract that protects our rights and provides the wages and benefits we’ve earned making Patagonia the success that it is in Reno.”

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