You can read 9 more articles this month
WORKERS worldwide walked out of Amazon warehouses today in protest over pay and conditions during the company’s Prime Day.
Prime Day is a two-day promotion for Amazon subscribers offering discounts, sales deals and same-day shipping, pushing workers to intense limits.
Employees at the company’s centre in Minnesota, US, took a six-hour strike action on the first day of the promotion, along with staff at seven warehouses in Germany, Spain, Poland and Britain.
Unions of Amazon workers in European countries have staged strikes on Prime Days in the past, but the walkout in Minnesota represents the first major action of its kind in the US.
UNI Global Union, a Switzerland-based union co-ordinating Amazon workers and their unions, president Stuart Appelaum said the company “needs to understand that human beings are not robots.”
War on Want executive director Asad Rehman called the company’s “unchecked” growth a “threat to everyone’s rights.”
He said: “There is a litany of abuses associated with Amazon business practices, from harassment of workers to unsafe conditions in its warehouses, that stretch right through to its tax affairs.
“Unless our politicians step up, this company that fails to pay its fair share of tax, and fails to treat its workers with respect or pay a living wage, will continue to grow and dominate the global economy in the 21st century. It’s not the future that workers or the public want.”
Mr Rehman said that workers and communities are coming together, taking action across the world to demand that “this engine of inequality” change its ways, adding that “there is nothing modern about exploitation.”
“It is people power that will force Amazon to give back to the communities where it operates, and ensure that the rise of digital companies results in benefits to the societies in which they operate instead of producing gross inequality where a few are made grotesquely rich while others have their basic rights at work denied or earn less than a living wage,” he said.
Amazon’s global sales for Prime Day are expected to hit $5.8 billion (over £4.3 billion) over the two days, having generated $3.9 billion (£3.11 billion) last year, according to London-based research group Coresight.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.