After being fired by Amazon after a protest, Christian Smalls led the campaign to create a union. Two years later, here it is: the first company.
In a historic move that made Joe Biden “happy” – he said Friday – employees at an Amazon warehouse in Staten Island, New York, voted to create the tech giant’s first union. This is the first time that a union organization – the Amazon Workers Union – has been able to rise up against Jeff Bezos’ company, which is often under fire for questionable working conditions.
After two days of vote counting, more than 50% of warehouse workers in JFK8 voted for the unions (2,654 to 2,131 opposed), stamping with wide smiles and fists several months of struggle, shared by Amazon workers from the rest of the country, which was also struggling to demand better working conditions than company management.
Syndicate leader Christian Smalls wrote on Twitter, who hopes the decision will lead to a “multiplier effect” on other Amazon warehouses: “We worked, played, and made history. Welcome to the first Amazon Consortium in the USA.” digital commerce.
amazon I wanted to make me the face of all union efforts against them….Welcome! @Jeff Bezos Tweet embed our end Tweet embed We worked, had fun, and made history‼️✊ #ALU #ALUfortheWin Welcome to America’s First Amazon Consortium
– Christian Smalls (@Shut_downAmazon) April 1, 2022
At 33 years old, Christian can be proud that he was a leader in a truly historic decision. The American – who also worked at Walmart, Target, and Home Depot – started as a rapper, but gave up his dream of music to support his twins, and in 2015 landed a job at Amazon in New Jersey, from there he left for New York, where he headed the process of creating a union When the epidemic started.
The worker was dismissed in March 2020 by the company’s management for organizing a strike to denounce the lack of protection for workers after the outbreak of the Corona virus, when he was working as a supervisor in the distribution center. According to Amazon, the removal was due to the fact that Christian Smalls did not follow safety protocols when attending the facility, despite being required to comply with quarantine after being exposed to the virus.
On the day of the dismissal, the state attorney general began investigating the case, precipitating several months of legal battles between the worker and the company. In written notes that reached the press and later expressed regret, David Zapolsky, a senior Amazon executive, called Smalls “stupid” and suggested the company make him the face of the entire union movement, to get a message across. The attack served as a motive and Christian really became the face of the guild, but the message he sent turned out to be another, and two years after his expulsion, he managed to lead to the creation of the much-desired union.
American billionaire Jeff Bezos company Always opposed to trade unionsShe campaigns for a “No” vote and even has a website. Like other large companies that oppose any kind of union body, Amazon has always argued that it is better to maintain direct contact between the company and the worker than to do so through third parties.
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