Carnegie Museum Workers File for Union Election

Contact: Jess Kamm Broomell, jkamm@usw.org, 412-562-2444

Approximately 500 scientists, educators, art handlers, front staff, gift shop clerks, ushers and other workers from across the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh system today announced that they filed for a union election as they seek to join the United Steelworkers (USW).

The group, working under the banner of the United Museum Workers, announced their organizing drive on June 29 and are now seeking a formal vote through the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

“Our movement began with concerns about transparency and limited career opportunities, but it now has even greater urgency as it’s expanded to address furloughs, pay cuts, and safety issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Katie Pirilla, an art handler at the Carnegie Museum of Art. “Workers continued organizing throughout the pandemic and found renewed strength in our fight for a safe museum for employees and the public alike.”

By filing for a certification election, the United Museum Workers seek to create a wall-to-wall collective bargaining unit comprising the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History, the Carnegie Science Center, the Andy Warhol Museum, and central administrative staff.

“Our group represents a diverse range of departments, duties, interests and ideas, but what all of us need is a seat at the table and a voice in the museum’s decision-making process,” said Ryan Martin, a sales associate in the Carnegie Museum of Art gift shop. “The founder of our museums, Andrew Carnegie, made his fortunes on the backs of thousands of workers who labored for low pay in extremely hazardous conditions. We intend to honor this legacy by voting for union representation.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.

Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Jess Kamm at 412-562-2446

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor R.J. Hufnagel

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222