Activists stage Amazon protest at Banbury Cross
Campaigners unfurl banner accusing poor treatment and anti-union tactics globally
Activists staged a protest at Banbury Cross this morning against the multi-national Amazon organisation, which has a fulfilment centre on the Southam Road in Banbury.
Campaigners unfurled a giant banner highlighting what they say is Amazon’s association with poor treatment and anti-union tactics globally. The protest comes on the same day as Amazon’s shareholders’ meeting.
The Unite Union is calling on the company to make a clear commitment and sign up to a declaration of neutrality. The declaration would guarantee Amazon workers the freedom to talk with and form a union without fear.
Unite says that workers in Bangladesh and Cambodia working in the Amazon supply chain have been the victims of shocking treatment in the midst of the global pandemic. They also claim in the USA workers in Bessemer, Alabama lost their campaign for union recognition against the backdrop of attacks on workers’ rights to form a union by using anti-union consultants.
Unite executive officer Sharon Graham said: “Whether it’s the UK, Cambodia, Bangladesh or the USA, Amazon is associated with anti-union tactics and poor treatment. It’s time for Amazon’s shareholders to demand action to deliver better rights for Amazon workers.
“Unite has recently written to Jeff Bezos in response to claims from the company about respecting UK workers’ rights to join and form a union. Our union is calling on the company to make a clear commitment and sign up to a declaration of neutrality. The declaration would guarantee workers the freedom to talk with and form a union without fear. If the company is genuine then it should be more than happy to sign the declaration.”
A spokesperson for Amazon told Banbury FM: “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Amazon has honoured all orders for both our US and EU private-label apparel businesses, and we are committed to continuously supporting our suppliers, their workers, and their communities.
“In 2020, we created a $1.3 million fund to invest in organizations providing critical frontline support to workers impacted by the pandemic.”
Amazon said they respect their employees’ right to join, form or not to join a labour union or other lawful organisation of their own selection. Across Amazon, including in their fulfilment centres, they place enormous value on having daily conversations with each associate. They work to make sure direct engagement with their employees is a strong part of their work culture.
Published: by Banbury FM Newsteam