Jun 11, 2021
Labor advocates on Thursday responded with disdain and derision to news that Amazon and the National Safety Council are partnering to find "innovative solutions" to prevent the workplace injuries that disproportionately plague the retail giant's warehouse employees. "The root cause of this issue is Amazon's business model of expecting workers to perform like robots at an unbearable and often unattainable pace of work." —Stuart Appelbaum, RWDSU
Stuart Appelbaum, president of the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union (RWDSU), said in a statement that, "After spending years pushing warehouse workers to work beyond their physical limits, Amazon's announcement today appears to be just another public relations stunt. Instead, Amazon can and must be doing more to protect its workers." "This partnership will be meaningless unless Amazon acknowledges and is transparent about workers' injuries and illness due to ergonomic issues at their facilities—something they have consistently failed to do," he added. "The root cause of this issue is Amazon's business model of expecting workers to perform like robots at an unbearable and often unattainable pace of work."
Jun 10, 2021
The National Labor Relations Board on Wednesday ruled that unions and employers engage in "objectionable conduct" that could warrant setting aside a union election when they offer to collect and mail ballots on behalf of workers. The four-member board, which has one vacancy, unanimously ruled that solicitation of mail ballots can give the impression that the NLRB is not in complete control of elections, thereby undermining their integrity. But the board rejected claims by Professional Transportation Inc (PTI), which provides crew transportation services to railroads, that union officials tainted a 2020 election by allegedly offering to help two workers fill out and mail their ballots. The ruling could affect a closely watched NLRB case involving a recent union election at an Amazon.com Inc warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, in which workers overwhelmingly voted against unionizing. The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union claims Amazon violated federal labor law by installing a mailbox at the facility, which the company says was meant to make it easier for workers to vote.