Amazon Alabama warehouse workers filed a notice to hold a unionization vote, setting up a potentially high-profile labor dispute between the e-commerce giant and the employees. It's the first step toward holding an election to legally form a bargaining unit at the Bessemer, Ala. warehouse, which would reportedly be the first U.S.-based union of Amazon workers.
- All of Amazon's U.S. operations are union-free, though some of its European employees bargain collectively. Part of the reason is high turnover and use of temps, as well as Amazon's unwelcome stance towards unionization and its efforts to prevent it.
- In a petition, the group told the National Labor Relations Board that they're seeking 1,500 full and part-time workers to be represented by the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union. The board will decide if an election is allowed.
- While an Amazon spokeswoman said workers have the right to join unions, the company believes it already offers benefits, including $15 hourly pay, that union organizers said they want.
- “We don’t believe this group represents the majority of our employees’ views,” Amazon spokesperson Lisa Levandowski said.
- On Monday, Sen. Bernie Sanders tweeted that he stands by the Alabama workers. Jeff Bezos, the world's wealthiest person, "must not interfere in this election," he argued.