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Amazon loses effort to overturn historic union election at Staten Island warehouse

Chris Smalls and Derrick Palmer at the temporary headquarters of the Amazon Labor Union in Staten Island, NY, on June 15, 2022.

Katie Schoolov

A historic union victory at Amazon’s Staten Island warehouse ought to be upheld, a National Labor Relations Board official recommended on Thursday.

In April, a lot more than 2,600 workers at Amazon’s warehouse in Staten Island, referred to as JFK8, voted to become listed on the Amazon Labor Union, becoming the initial group to vote and only unionizing at among the e-commerce giant’s U.S. facilities.

Amazon in-may sought to overturn the outcomes of the election. It submitted a filing to the NLRB accusing the federal agency’s Brooklyn office of violating labor law by appearing to aid the union drive. Amazon, including 25 objections in its filing, also alleged that labor organizers intimidated workers to vote within their favor.

Amazon’s objections kicked off 24 days of hearings held via Zoom where lawyers for the business, NLRB’s Region 29 office, and the ALU dissected conduct through the election. JFK8 workers and union organizers, including Chris Smalls, co-founder and interim president of the ALU, were on the list of greater than a dozen witnesses called to testify.

Lisa Dunn, the NLRB attorney presiding on the hearing, concluded in a filing Thursday that Amazon “hadn’t met its burden” of establishing the agency, the union or any parties “engaged in objectionable conduct affecting the outcomes of the election,” NLRB spokesperson Kayla Blado said. Dunn also recommended ALU be certified as bargaining representative, Blado said.

Amazon has until Sept. 16 to file objections to Dunn’s recommendations, that may then be heard by way of a regional director of the NLRB. The regional director will determine whether to order a fresh union election, or certify the outcomes of the April election, of which point Amazon will undoubtedly be necessary to start contract negotiations with the ALU.

The union said in a statement that it is happy with the hearing officer’s recommendations.

“It really is our hope that the Regional Director for Region 28 can expedite our certification and that the NLRB enforces Amazon’s legal obligation to negotiate with the workers of the ALU,” the union said in a release posted to Twitter.

Representatives from Amazon and the NLRB didn’t immediately react to a obtain comment.

The ALU, a grassroots organization of current and former Amazon employees, has sought to expand its reach beyond JFK8. The union in-may didn’t replicate its successful union campaign at another Staten Island warehouse, nonetheless it has gained traction elsewhere.

Workers at an Amazon warehouse near Albany would like to be represented by the ALU. The NLRB has yet to create a romantic date for that election. A Kentucky Amazon warehouse in addition has expressed fascination with organizing under ALU.

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