What Is Amazonians United?

By Samantha Rosenbaum / April 17th 2023

“Amazonians United is a movement of workers fighting to end management’s domination in our workplaces. We organize with our coworkers to fight together for the dignified lives we all deserve. We build community at our workplaces, look out for each other and collectively fight for things like higher pay, safety, fairness and respect. We’re stronger together, so we create worker organization at our sites with coworkers who are fed up with the bullshit and want to do something about it. “

In a recent development reported by TechCrunch on December 22, 2021, Amazon workers from two separate warehouses in Chicago walked out during their shifts, voicing concerns about their treatment and demanding higher wages. The movement behind this action, known as “Amazonians United,” seeks to challenge management dominance in workplaces, advocating for better working conditions and fair compensation.

During a live stream with Amazonians United, a worker from the Chicago warehouse expressed grievances, stating, “We have been passed over for raises. We are being overworked, even when there is sufficient people to work here.” Additionally, the worker highlighted issues such as unfulfilled promises of bonuses and the reclassification of some employees from permanent to temporary status, creating an unsafe working environment. The workers, facing demanding schedules between 1:20 AM and 11:50 AM, are calling for a $5 pay raise.

Amazon informed TechCrunch that the current starting pay in their two Chicago facilities is $15.80 per hour. The Amazonians United speaker also mentioned a reduction in break times from 20 to 15 minutes due to the pandemic. Despite ongoing challenges related to the pandemic, three workers tested positive for COVID-19 at the Cicero Amazon facility on the day of the walkout.

Before initiating the walkout, the Amazon workers presented a list of demands to management, seeking improvements in various aspects of their working conditions. With no response from management, the workers proceeded with the walkout. There are claims that employees participating in the walkout were warned by management that they might lose their badges, suggesting potential repercussions.

An Amazon spokesperson assured TechCrunch that the company respects employees’ rights to protest and recognizes their legal right to do so. The spokesperson emphasized Amazon’s commitment to providing competitive pay, benefits, and growth opportunities. The company denied allegations of firing workers due to participation in the walkout, stating that workers were assured there would be no retaliation for protesting.

The founder of Amazonians United, Jonathan Bailey, filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), accusing Amazon of violating labor laws by retaliating against him for organizing. Bailey claimed he was detained and interrogated by a manager for 90 minutes after organizing a walkout. The NLRB found merit in the allegations, leading to a complaint against Amazon. As part of the settlement, Amazon was required to remind employees of their right to organize through emails and physical bulletin boards.

Tensions have escalated, with Amazon employees advocating for better compensation and conditions nationwide. The walkout in Chicago coincided with Amazon’s busiest time of the year, just ahead of Christmas. The workers emphasized their commitment to ensuring efficient operations but stressed the importance of fair treatment.

If workers encounter difficulties expressing their concerns at Amazon, the legal team encourages them to seek assistance at CJ@AmazonSellersLawyer.com through the Amazon Employment Law Division, which offers various levels of support.

Our Amazon Employment Law Division can assist you in three ways:

(1) Do It Yourself: Knowledge & Forms;

(2) Done With You: Knowledge, Forms and Attorney Help Editing the Documents; and

(3) Done For You: We meet with you and draft the documents for you. We may also, in some cases, offer to fully represent the client.

 

Rosenbaum, Famularo & Segall, P.C.

Telephone: 212-256-1109

Email: CJ@AmazonSellersLawyer.com

Address: 138 East Park Ave. Long Beach, NY 11561

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