Amazon Workers Abandon California Union Election Plan After Loss
Amazon.com Inc. workers seeking to join a union at a company warehouse in Southern California have backed away from their attempt to hold an election, a setback for the upstart Amazon Labor Union following its defeat at a New York facility last week.
The union withdrew its petition for an election at a warehouse in Moreno Valley, California, according to a National Labor Relations Board docket that includes a letter, dated Friday, approving a request to stop the vote. Unions that make such requests aren't asked to give a reason, NLRB spokesperson Kayla Blado said. Amazon Labor Union organizers didn't respond to messages seeking comment.
The union won an election at an Amazon warehouse in Staten Island in April, but has struggled to consolidate those gains or expand its reach. The union lost an election at a second, smaller Staten Island facility, and last week workers at a warehouse near Albany, New York, rejected joining the union by a 2-1 margin.
The union is seeking higher wages, better benefits and other improvements to working conditions. Amazon has challenged the legitimacy of the Staten Island vote, raising objections to the conduct of organizers and the NLRB instead of bargaining with the union.
The Moreno Valley facility, called ONT8, is located in the heart of a massive cluster of Amazon warehouses in the Inland Empire region east of Los Angeles. It is a critical hub for the Seattle-based e-commerce company, which relies heavily on imported goods from the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Labor organizers have spent years discussing Amazon employees' concerns about working conditions in the region. Workers at ONT8 filed for an election earlier this month.
The Verge reported earlier that the union had withdrawn plans for the vote.