US online retailer Amazon wants to take action against creating the group’s first union representation. Amazon requested more time to file justified objections to the vote at a warehouse in New York in late March, according to official documents submitted Thursday to the Federal Labor Law Office. The company accuses unionists of “threatening” employees before voting.
The majority of workers at the Staten Island warehouse voted to join the Amazon Workers’ Union (ALU) group of workers. This was a serious defeat for Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who has successfully prevented the formation of union representation in the second largest employer in the United States since the company was founded in 1994.
Amazon sees unfair practices
However, Amazon accuses AAU of unfair practices. Union representatives sometimes “intimidated” and harassed employees while they were in line. They also “threatened immigrants” by telling them they would “lose their benefits if they did not vote for the union.”
“This is ridiculous,” attorney Eric Milner said on behalf of the union. “The workers spoke and their voices were heard.” Amazon management now wants to “delay the process to avoid the inevitable: the negotiation of a corporate agreement.”
He accused the company of spending “millions” on intimidation campaigns. “Amazon held forced meetings, Amazon acted in a threatening manner, and Amazon illegally fired workers for trying to organize,” he said.
The company has until Friday night to file its objections and until April 22 to present its evidence.
Meanwhile, the RWDSU union, which imposed a vote on employee representation in a warehouse in the US state of Alabama, made similar allegations against the company. She also filed a number of complaints against Amazon with the Department of Labor. The group attempted to confuse and influence employees with coercion and “fear of retribution”. Amazon has not commented on the allegations against AFP.
In March, there was a vote by mail among warehouse employees in the town of Bessemer. However, the result remains open: while 993 employees voted against the union’s formation, 875 voted for it – but there are still 416 “controversial” ballots, the admissibility of which will be decided upon at a formal hearing next week. A vote a year ago was called off after authorities found Amazon had broken the rules.
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