Sunday, 29th January, 2023
Sunday, 29th January, 2023 warehouse workers reject union drive in majority vote warehouse workers reject union drive in majority vote

Efforts to unionize warehouse workers in Alabama were unofficially defeated on Friday by a more than 2-to-1 margin with more than half of the ballots counted.

So far, over 1,700 voted against forming a union, with nearly 700 ballots in favor. A simple majority is needed for victory, but both sides have the right to challenge the eligibility of ballots.

Union group RWDSU said it is filing objections charging that Amazon interfered with the right of its Bessemer, Alabama employees to vote.

Amazon shares were up 0.5% Friday; the vote count resumed at 8:30 a.m. CT (1330 GMT).

Whatever the results, the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), which is trying to organize the employees, has the same legal options as Amazon: challenge the eligibility of individual voters or allege that coercive conduct tainted the election.

In the latter case, the dispute would play out before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and then likely in a federal appeals court.

Unionizing Amazon, the second-largest private employer in America, would be a start to reverse long-running declines in union membership, which fell to 11% of the eligible workforce in 2020 from 20% in 1983, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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