More than half of voters in the Bessemer warehouse in Alabama voted against organizing the movement, which pleased the e-commerce company.
For American union members, this was a major failure. On Friday, April 9, an attempt to create the first union on Amazon in a warehouse in Alabama, in the southeastern United States, failed. Most employees who participated in the voting voted against the initiative.
At around 5 pm French time, more than half of the 3,215 votes received at the Bessemer factory voted against: 1,798 employees voted against the establishment of a union, while 738 votes against it. More than 5,800 employees were asked to vote, but the attendance rate was only 55%. These figures confirm the defeat of supporters of the anti-union movement and the victory of the e-commerce giants that opposed the movement.
“Our system has been damaged, and Amazon has benefited a lot from it”Stuart Appelbaum, president of RWDSU, said that the employees of the Bessemer warehouse hope to join this distribution alliance. “We will call on the Federal Labor Law Office to hold Amazon accountable for its illegal and shocking behavior during the campaign.”, He warned.
Bessemer’s movement has national significance. He saw the support of anti-union workers, including artists, Democratic and Republican lawmakers, and even President Joe Biden, and Amazon, which was thriving during the pandemic.
The Seattle team and RWDSU clashed online. On the ground, the Amazon union has been using texts, posters, and weekly briefings to oppose the union’s protests for months, as unionists mobilize employees at the warehouse entrance day and night.
Union workers complained of slow pace, insufficient time to go to toilets or meals, lack of safety protection measures (especially measures against Covid-19) and insufficient wages related to the required work.
Amazon defended himself. He recalled an hourly wage of $15 an hour (more than twice the minimum wage in Alabama) and provided social benefits such as medical insurance. The team ensures that its employees have the necessary rest time.
Amazon is the second largest employer in the United States, with 800,000 employees, and is often criticized by the association and some of its employees for their social and environmental responsibilities.
Another case damaged its image this week: NLRB, the US agency responsible for labor law, estimated after an investigation that the layoffs of two computer designers criticizing the online business giant were indeed retaliatory measures against the company. Part of the company.