Supply Chain Matters updates readers on actions occurring yesterday as some Amazon workers across multiple facilities walked out to demonstrate grievances with management.

 

Published reports indicate that hundreds of Amazon workers temporarily walked off their jobs yesterday in protest over return-to-office mandates and on perceived lack of teeth within overall corporate sustainability efforts. This walkout was reportedly organized joint coordination among Amazon’s Remote Advocacy and Amazon Employees for Climate Advocacy community groups.

Reporting by The Seattle Times, business broadcasting network CNBC , and statements from Amazon differ on the overall number of workers that participated.

The numbers vary from over 2,000 to several hundred, but they represent a small percentage of Amazon’s overall corporate workforce.

Reportedly, more than 20,000 Amazon workers had signed a petition urging the company to reconsider its latest back to office mandate initiated at the beginning of May which mandates working from Amazon offices at a minimum of three days per week.

According to reporting from The Seattle Times, workers provided images of walkouts involving Brussels, Chicago, London, Miami, as well as offices in Virginia and Idaho.

In the area of corporate sustainability efforts, employees indicate that the company has scaled back its Climate Pledge which included an original goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2030. Placards carried by protesting employees indicated “short-term thinking” and “lost trust.”

 

Other Actions and Developments

At the recently held Amazon Annual Meeting of investors there were 18 resolutions, some of which included assessment of employee working conditions and freedom to organize, working conditions among existing warehouses, executive compensation levels and corporate sustainability efforts.

All 18 proposals failed to garner shareholder approval.

 

NLRB Ruling

The online retail platform provider continues to state a respect for the right of employees to unionize without reprisals. However, Bloomberg reported last week that a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) regional director ruled that the company illegally restricted employees ability to visit the lone unionized warehouse in Staten Island, New York during time off, in order to discourage workers from engaging in labor activism. The action further accuses the online retail platform provider of terminating two employees because of their involvement in the Amazon Labor Union.

The complaint further specifically cites CEO Andy Jassy of violating federal labor law for stating during a live interview that labor union representation would make workers less empowered and harder for them to have direct relationships with managers.

The company has denied it violated federal labor laws and continues to indicate it will pursue remediation in federal court.

Added Thoughts

This newest phase of Amazon’s business and operational management strategies is drawing attention from multiple inside and outside dimensions and the question remains as to how the online retail platform provider will address such issues in acknowledgement, resolve or added actions.

Such forces are not limited just to Amazon but other tech providers and businesses as well.

They are all coalescing and businesses cannot afford to ignore a changing tide.

 

 

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