According to disclosures filed with the Labor Department, Amazon spent over $14.2 million last year on consultants discouraging workers from unionizing. These consultants were paid to prevent collective bargaining within Amazon’s workforce by delivering anti-union talking points to workers in “captive audience” meetings. Amazon pays these firms around $3,000 per day, plus expenses, for each consultant.
Although the fledgling Amazon Labor Union (ALU) successfully organised a warehouse on Staten Island, New York, last year, the firm has held unions at bay at its more than 100 facilities in the U.S. Despite this, after the Staten Island vote, employees at two further New York warehouses rejected union offers.
Amazon has around 1.5 million workforce
Amazon has encountered union organising campaigns in Alabama, New York, California, and other states in the United States. In only 2021, the business spent $4.3 million on anti-union consultants. To ensure that employees know whom their employer hired and how much it spent to push for unionisation, employers and their consultants must disclose any agreements they have with the Labor Department.
Almost 1.5 million people work for the corporation globally, and $514 billion was its revenue last year. Amazon works with independent experts, according to Eileen Hards, a spokeswoman, to “ensure our employees are fully informed about their rights.” Hards pointed out that Amazon’s facilities are far larger than ordinary American workplaces and that the business was the target of multiple organising initiatives in 2017.
A first contract between the ALU and Amazon for employees at the JFK8 site in Staten Island is still being negotiated. Amazon also challenged the election results, which showed that the union won by a margin of 2,654 to 2,131, and claimed that organisers and the National Labor Relations Board fraudulently tainted the ballots. Amazon’s objection was rejected, and the union received certification in January. However, Amazon has appealed that determination for review by the labour board in Washington.
The company faced union organizing drives in Alabama, New York, California and elsewhere in the US
Connor Spence, an Amazon employee on Staten Island and an organiser with the ALU, and other workers investigated the consultants and their fees in response to the expenditure on anti-union consultants to expose them to other employees. Also, they blatantly contradicted the consultants’ arguments in meetings.
Even while it is uncommon for a business to acknowledge spending more than $1 million on labour consultants in a single year, much less than $14 million, Amazon employs over 1.5 million people globally and generated $514 billion in revenue in 2017. Despite its scale, the business has encountered union organising campaigns in Alabama, New York, California, and other states in the United States.
Employers and their consultants must publish their agreements with the Labor Department so that employees may learn whom the firm hired and how much it spent to push them on unionisation. The deadline for employers to tell the government of their 2022 expenditures was Friday.