Workers at the Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama have voted against creating a union by a wide margin.
Workers at the Bessemer, Alabama, plant have voted 1,798 to 738 to reject the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union. Counting concluded on Friday morning, and attention will now focus on some 505 challenged ballots , but the margin of victory was too greatto change the outcome.
The fight to form a union in the warehouse in Bessemer, a suburb north of Birmingham, we eagerly watched by America’s labor movement as one of its most important battles in recent history. Some 5,800 workers were eligible to vote on whether to join the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) as the first unionized Amazon warehouse in the US.
In a statement, the RWDSU president, Stuart Appelbaum, said: “We won’t let Amazon’s lies, deception and illegal activities go unchallenged, which is why we are formally filing charges against all of the egregious and blatantly illegal actions taken by Amazon during the union vote.
Amazon strongly and publicly opposed the union, from seeking to delay the election, pushing for in-person voting, hiring expensive union avoidance consultants, forcing workers to participate in captive audience meetings, flooding workers with anti-union messaging and encouraging them to vote against it, sponsoring local media content, and waging PR fights against critics.
Amazon had pulled out all the stops to prevent the union from winning. This result will, unfortunately, enable one of the most predatory companies to continue its behavior.