Chicago NLRB Officials Claim Amazon Violates Labor Laws


Local labor commission officials Monday filed a complaint against Amazon, alleging it illegally blocked organizing activities at four suburban warehouses last year.

According to a complaint filed by Angie Cowan-Hamada, regional director of the National Labor Relations Commission in Chicago, workers at four facilities in Joliet, Monie, Chanahon and Romeoville received pay increases in August and September last year. It is said that it organized by collecting petition signatures. . The company reportedly told workers that they could not participate in protected activities outside the facility in violation of the National Labor Relations Act.

Amazon is said to have called police to workers collecting signatures in Joliet and Romeoville, and directed police to evict workers from the Joliet site.

The company is also accused of conducting illegal surveillance of Joliet, Mony and Romeoville workers, as well as illegally interrogating Romeoville workers.

A public hearing on the case is scheduled for early October at the Labor Commission District Office in Chicago.

“These complaints are unfounded and we look forward to demonstrating that through the legal process,” Amazon said in a statement Wednesday.

The complaint also alleges that Amazon violated the law by “selectively and bizarrely” applying certain company policies “only to employees engaged in union activities or other protected joint activities.” ing.

Local labor commission officials filed similar complaints against the company this week in Alabama, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Wisconsin, according to the NLRB.

One of the policies at issue is the company’s “after-hours access” policy, which, according to the complaint, prohibits employees from standing in “work areas” inside or outside Amazon’s warehouses during off-hours. .

The complaint seeks Amazon to repeal the regulation for three years. Applies at all properties where this policy is in force.

In the Chicago complaint, labor commission officials also seek to rescind the company’s solicitation policy, which prohibits the solicitation or distribution of documents in the workplace, and that the policy does not extend to unions and other protected activities. Officials claim it is also being selectively enforced against engaged workers.

Workers at the company’s Staten Island JFK8 warehouse are members of the Amazon Union. Two other attempts to form a union in New York have failed. Union elections for workers in Bessemer, Alabama are still being contested.

Workers at warehouses in Illinois have not filed for union elections, but warehouse staff at some facilities have engaged in other forms of organizing in recent years.

In October, workers at the Joliet facility, named in Monday’s Labor Commission complaint, protested outside the facility on the first day of the company’s fall prime sale, demanding a base salary of $25 an hour.

More than 40 workers at the same Joliet facility filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleging racist work conditions. Employees had previously claimed that racist death threats had been scrawled on the walls of the warehouse’s restrooms. “Amazon works hard to protect employees from all forms of discrimination and to provide an environment where employees feel safe,” Amazon said at the time.


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Written by Natalia Chi

Chicago Popular; Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.

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