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Amazon seeks to overturn union win, says vote was tainted

Amazon is searching for to overturn the historic union victory at one in every of its New York Metropolis warehouses, arguing in a authorized submitting Friday that union organizers and the Nationwide Labor Relations Board acted in a manner that tainted the outcomes. It now needs to redo the election.

The e-commerce large listed 25 objections within the submitting obtained by The Related Press, accusing organizers with the nascent Amazon Labor Union of intimidating staff to vote for the union, a declare an lawyer representing the group has known as “patently absurd.”

“The workers have spoken,” Eric Milner, the lawyer, mentioned Thursday in an announcement after Amazon’s preliminary deliberate objections had been made public in one other authorized submitting. “Amazon is selecting to disregard that, and as an alternative have interaction in stalling techniques to keep away from the inevitable — coming to the bargaining desk and negotiating for a contract” on behalf of the employees, he mentioned.

Warehouse staff in Staten Island forged 2,654 votes — or about 55% — in favor of a union, giving the fledgling group sufficient help to tug off a victory final Friday.

In a single objection, Amazon mentioned organizers “deliberately created hostile confrontations in entrance of eligible voters,” by interrupting the necessary conferences it held to steer its workers to reject the union drive. In a submitting launched final week, the corporate disclosed it spent about $4.2 million final yr on labor consultants.

In one other objection, Amazon focused organizers’ distribution of hashish to staff, saying the labor board “can not condone such a observe as a respectable methodology of acquiring help for a labor group.” New York legalized the leisure use of marijuana final yr for these over 21.

The corporate had initially signaled it deliberate to problem the election outcomes based mostly on a lawsuit the NLRB filed in March through which the board sought to drive Amazon to reinstate a fired worker who was concerned within the union drive.

The corporate pointed to the lawsuit in one in every of its objections filed Friday, saying the regional NLRB workplace that introduced the go well with “failed to guard the integrity and neutrality of its procedures,” and had created an impression of help for the union by searching for reinstatement for the previous worker, Gerald Bryson.

“Primarily based on the proof we’ve seen thus far, as set out in our objections, we imagine that the actions of the NLRB and the ALU improperly suppressed and influenced the vote, and we expect the election must be carried out once more so {that a} truthful and broadly consultant vote will be had,” Kelly Nantel, an Amazon spokesperson, mentioned in an announcement.

Bryson was fired within the early days of the pandemic after main a protest calling for the corporate to do extra to guard staff towards covid-19. Whereas off the job throughout the protest, Bryson acquired right into a dispute with one other employee and was later fired for violating Amazon’s vulgar-language coverage, in keeping with his lawyer Frank Kearl.

The NLRB didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark. Its spokesperson, Kayla Blado, has beforehand mentioned the unbiased company has been licensed by Congress to implement the Nationwide Labor Relations Act.

“All NLRB enforcement actions towards Amazon have been in line with that Congressional mandate,” she mentioned.

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