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04/09/2021

Amazon Wins Warehouse Union Vote

Amazon workers based in an Alabama warehouse have voted not to unionize, ending the largest workforce threat to the e-commerce giant.
Amazon warehouse

Amazon workers based in an Alabama warehouse have voted not to unionize, ending the largest workforce threat to the e-commerce giant.

The final vote tally was 1,798 votes against unionizing and 738 votes in favor of joining the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, multiple news outlets have reported.

Executive Summary

The vote among warehouse workers in Bessemer, Alabama, was the closest recent attempt at a union across Amazon’s workforce. The has been heavily critical of unions as reports of unfair labor conditions, including lack of bathroom breaks, have come out in the press over the last several years. The National Labor Relations Board recently found Amazon illegally fired two people for speaking up against working conditions and voicing concerns over the company’s climate change impact.

The union vote was closely watched across the retail industry, as Amazon is the nation’s second largest employer. 

While the votes show a wide margin against unionizing, the union has filed a challenge to the election, charging unfair labor practices at Amazon. According to the retailer, “that’s not true.”

“Amazon didn’t win—our employees made the choice to vote against joining a union,” the company said in a statement. “Our employees are the heart and soul of Amazon, and we’ve always worked hard to listen to them, take their feedback, make continuous improvements, and invest heavily to offer great pay and benefits in a safe and inclusive workplace. We’re not perfect, but we’re proud of our team and what we offer, and will keep working to get better every day.”