Amid accusations of voter intimidation tactics, Amazon released a statement following a victory in the impactful union election at its Bessemer, Ala., warehouse.
Only 16% of the workers who voted cast ballots in favor of forming Amazon’s first-ever union. Just more than half, 55%, of the 5,800-plus employees participated in the election.
The statement anticipates a further push from the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union (RWDSU) to say Amazon illegally tampered with the election.
“It’s easy to predict the union will say that Amazon won this election because we intimidated employees, but that’s not true. Our employees heard far more anti-Amazon messages from the union, policymakers, and media outlets than they heard from us,” Amazon said.
The RWDSU announced Friday it filed an official complaint with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).
“We demand a comprehensive investigation over Amazon’s behavior in corrupting this election,” RWDSU president, Stuart Appelbaum, said in a statement.
A Business Insider story quoted workers who supported unionization and highlighted some of Amazon’s alleged tactics including:
Mandatory anti-union meetings
Sending employees texts
Putting up anti-union signs in the bathrooms
Also at issue was a mailbox installed near the warehouse, the subject of another RWDSU objection.
Amazon encouraged employees to cast their ballots in the mailbox, which, according to the result of a Washington Post Freedom of Information Act request, found that Amazon pushed the U.S. Postal Service to install it.
In its statement, Amazon also took advantage of its platform to push for a $15 national minimum wage:
“We welcome the opportunity to sit down and share ideas with any policymaker who wants to pass laws ensuring that all workers in the U.S. are guaranteed at least $15 an hour, health care from day one, and other strong benefits.”
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