Amazon workers strike during Prime Day
Written by Peter Walker
Amazon workers are staging protests against warehouse conditions to coincide with the start of the 48-hour Amazon Prime Day, which started today.
The GMB union is leading the protests outside fulfilment centres across the UK, citing what it described as “dehumanising” working conditions in those facilities.
Demonstrations are being held outside the sites in Peterborough today, then Bolton, Coventry, Swansea, and Warrington tomorrow. Others will be held over the course of the week at Rugeley, Milton Keynes, Coalville and Doncaster.
The union compared Amazon’s warehouse conditions to those overseen by 19th century mill owners, claiming the e-commerce giant’s Rugeley site is one of the most dangerous places to work in the UK.
Mick Rix, GMB national officer, said that Amazon workers want the company’s chief executive Jeff Bezos to know they are people – not robots.
“It's time for him to show empathy with the very people that have helped to contribute to his vast and increasing personal fortune.
“It’s prime time for Amazon get round the table with GMB and discuss ways to make their workplaces safer, and to give their workers an independent voice,” he added.
Workers at seven of Amazon’s sites across German have also started strikes, demanding better pay and conditions.
According to labour union Verdi, the strike began on Sunday evening and will continue into Monday - with the slogan “no more discounts on our incomes” - at warehouses in Werne, Rheinberg, Leipzig, Graben, Koblenz, as well as at Amazon’s two sites in Bad Hersfeld.
Prime Day offers discounts to Amazon’s Prime customers, encouraging non-members to sign up in order to benefit from the offers.