Amazon dealing with rising unionization stress at two New York warehouse amenities

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Inside an Amazon fulfillment center in Washington state. (GeekWire File Photo)

Another Amazon warehouse in New York could be gearing up for a unionization vote.

A week after the National Labor Relations Board said enough interest had been shown by workers at a facility called JFK8 in Staten Island, workers at LDJ5 in the borough are also reportedly seeking union representation. Business Insider reported on the latest effort Wednesday.

The unionization drive is being led by a group called Amazon Labor Union, headed by organizer Christian Smalls, a former Amazon employee who was fired by the company in 2020. Smalls led a walkout at JFK8 in an effort to pressure Amazon to do more to protect warehouse workers amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

He tweeted Wednesday that a petition had been filed with the NLRB for an election at LDJ5.

The Amazon Labor Union has been trying to gather enough signatures for an election at JFK8, but withdrew a previous petition in November.

“We’re skeptical that there are a sufficient number of legitimate signatures and we’re seeking to understand how these signatures were verified,” Amazon said in a statement to GeekWire. “Our employees have always had a choice of whether or not to join a union, and as we saw just a few months ago, the vast majority of our team in Staten Island did not support the ALU.”

The company has yet to receive any notification from the NLRB regarding LDJ5.

Amazon is facing a second union vote at a warehouse facility in Bessemer, Ala. The unionization effort at that facility was struck down by a wide margin last April, but the NLRB called for a redo after it said it found Amazon “interfered with the employees’ exercise of a free and reasoned choice by creating the appearance of irregularity in the election procedure.” 

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The new Alabama election will be held by mailed ballots, sent from NLRB this Friday and counted on March 28.

In a tweet on Monday, Smalls indicated that ALU’s efforts are widening.

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